Trigger Fish Do Bite ....

I can categorically confirm - Triggerfish have VERY sharp teeth. You see, dear reader, I have first hand experience.

I enjoy snorkelling. I'm not a terribly confident snorkeller but once I overcome that initial dunk in the water, I'm usually raring to go.

It was our second day in the Maldives some years ago and we decided to swim out from our over-water villa and have a look around to see what was happening out in the ocean.

The island that we were staying at - Vilamendoo - didn't supply snorkelling equipment and we knew that to hire it was mega-money, so we took our own. I think this was the schoolboy error. My snorkel wasn't fitted properly and kept filling with water so I looked through my mask and saw some lovely soft sand in the distance and decided to take a pit stop there so I could stand up away from the coral and try and fix my mask.

“The next thing I saw were these very sharp teeth coming towards me.”

Beware of nesting sites

It would appear that I had inadvertently visited a nearby triggerfish nest and Mr/s Triggerfish took exception to me entering their territory. I tried to swim away, but you know what, everything sort of goes in slow motion when you've got a triggerfish hanging from the top of your left thigh.

Let me tell you those buggers may not be very big but they aren't half feisty and have VERY sharp teeth. In case you wondered, I got away relatively lightly as it was only an Orange Tipped Triggerfish that attacked me.

Savlon is a saviour

A message for everyone who's travelling - always carry a first aid kit. Mine came in handy on this occasion, especially the Savlon. I just slapped some on the broken skin, took an antihistamine and hoped for the best. Obviously I'm still here to tell the tale.

FTM Top Tips

  • Always carry savlon or antiseptic cream for triggerfish bites

  • Never go near a triggerfish, especially when it's near soft sandy ground

  • People can still hear you screaming through a snorkel