I caught this bad boy on The Galveston Fishing Pier. It is actually the second one I have caught there and was told this isn't particularly normal. Either way, I was crunk about it.
Most of you know that a puffer fish is called a puffer because it inflates. It does this by inhaling large amounts of water or air to increase its size as a defense mechanism. The puffer fish has tremendous eye sight, but it isn't very quick.
Not only do they puff out to help fight off predators, they also possess a toxin called tetrodotoxin. Tetrodotoxin can be stronger than cyanide and is one of the most toxic components known to man. One large puffer contains enough toxin to kill several men; however, sharks can eat puffer fish without consequence.
But if you ever catch one, be careful when you get your pictures and try to use gloves (just to be safe) when you toss it back. While we aren't too big on eating puffer here in Texas--- in Japan, highly trained chefs will serve Fugu (puffer) as a delicacy. I have also read that dolphins are fans of a little puff here and there; they have been filmed off the coast of Africa passing puffer fish back and forth in order to get high.
Catching this guy landed me a spot in the Reel Report in The Galveston Daily News. Capt. Joe Kent explains the reason for the puffer (which is usually an offshore fish) being so close to the pier: "the warmer waters and higher salinity levels have contributed to a large variety of fish being reported in shallower waters this year."
This shout out goes to Capt. Joe Kent and his Reel Report in The Galveston Daily News--- Thanks for making me famous!
And a special shout out goes to Virginia Adair for being a loyal Daily News reader--- if it weren't for her, I wouldn't have even known that I made it in the Reel Report.