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Reef Triggerfish Scientific classification Kingdom: Animalia Phylum: Chordata Class: Actinopterygii Order: Tetraodontiformes Family: Balistidae Genus: Rhinecanthus Species: R. rectangulus Binomial name Rhinecanthus rectangulus Bloch & Schneider, 1801 Humuhumunukunukuāpuaa redirects here. For the Rhinecanthus aculeatus of the same name, see Lagoon triggerfish. For the High School Musical song, see Humuhumunukunukuapua'a (song) The reef, rectangular, or wedge-tail triggerfish, also known by its Hawaiian name, humu­humu­nuku­nuku­āpuaʻa (pronounced [ˈhumuˈhumuˈnukuˈnukuˈwaːpuˈwɐʔə]), also spelled Humuhumunukunukuapua'a or just humuhumu for short; meaning "triggerfish with a snout like a pig"[1]), is one of several species of triggerfish. Classified as Rhinecanthus rectangulus, it is endemic to the salt water coasts of various central and south Pacific Ocean islands. It is often asserted that the Hawaiian name is one of the longest words in the Hawaiian Language and that "the name is longer than the fish." Contents 1 Description 2 Distribution 3 Hawaii state fish 4 Notes 5 References // Description The triggerfish's teeth are blue and they are set close together inside its relatively chubby mouth, it has a small second spine, which it can use to lock its main spine into an upright position. The triggerfish can wedge itself into small crevices and lock its spine to make it extremely difficult to get out. In addition, when fleeing from predators, the triggerfish will sometimes make grunting noises, possibly a call to warn other nearby triggerfish of danger at hand.[2] One particularly interesting aspect of the fish's behavior is the ability to blow jets of water from its mouth. These jets help the fish find benthic invertebrates that may be buried under the substrate. Triggerfish can often be seen spitting sand from their mouths in order to sift through the material in search of edible detritus or organisms. Reef triggers are fairly aggressive and will generally not tolerate conspecific species in its general vicinity, thus the fish is often found solitary. This is particularly true in captivity. Triggers have the remarkable ability to rapidly alter their coloration. They can fade into a relatively drab appearance when sleeping or demonstrating submission while the coloration is often the most vivid when the fish is healthy and unthreatened by its surroundings. Distribution The reef triggerfish is distributed throughout the Indo-Pacific region, and it is especially prominent in the coral reefs of the Hawaiian Islands. Hawaii state fish Humuhumunukunukuapua'a at Kealakekua Bay, Hawaii Due to an expiration of a Hawaiian state law, the trigger fish ceased to be the state fish of Hawaii in 1990.[3] On April 17, 2006, bill HB1982 was presented to the Governor of Hawaiʻi which permanently reinstated the reef triggerfish (humuhumunukunukuapuaʻa) as the state fish of Hawaiʻi.[4] The bill passed into law on May 2, 2006 and was effective upon its approval.[5][6] The 1933 popular song "My Little Grass Shack in Kealakekua, Hawaii" included the Hawaiian name in its refrain, and song of this title was included in the High School Musical 2. The fish's name was also included in a scene from the movie Forgetting Sarah Marshall. Humuhumunukunukuapuaʻa means "triggerfish with a pig-like short snout". It is not, as often claimed, the longest fish name in Hawaiian; that distinction belongs to lauwiliwilinukunukuʻoiʻoi ("long-snouted fish shaped like a wiliwili leaf"), the butterflyfish Forcipiger longirostris. For the purposes of religious sacrifices, every land animal in the Hawaiian islands had an equivalent in the sea.[citation needed] The Humuhumunukunukuapua‘a was seen as equal to a pig. Notes ^ humuhumunukunukuapuaa. The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language: Fourth Edition. 2000 ^ ^ "Lawmaker seeks official status for humuhumunukunukuapuaa". USA Today. January 1, 2006. Retrieved May 22, 2010.  ^ HB1982 Measure History ^ House Bill ^ Hawaii may honor long-named fish - Weird news - References "Rhinecanthus rectangulus". Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved 30 January 2006.  "Marine Life Profile: Reef Triggerfish" (PDF). Waikiki Aquarium. Retrieved 10 November 2005. [dead link] Froese, Rainer, and Daniel Pauly, eds. (2005). "Rhinecanthus rectangulus" in FishBase. December 2005 version. "Legislation to permanently establish as Hawaii state fish". Archived from the original on 10 July 2006. Retrieved 28 January 2006.  "Hawaii may honor fish with long name". Retrieved 18 April 2006.