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Cyclichthys spilostylus.jpg
Cyclichthys spilostylus
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Tetraodontiformes
Family: Diodontidae
Genus: Cyclichthys
Kaup, 1855

Cyclicthys is a genus of the family Diodontidae, are usually known as Swelltoads.

Distinguishing features[edit]

Fish of the genus Cyclicthys have three-rooted, rigid spines (actually modified scales) distributed over their bodies, and beak-like jaws, used to crush their hard-shelled prey (crustaceans and molluscs).[1] They differ from the porcupinefishes of the genus Diodon, which have moveable spines.

Defensive mechanisms[edit]

Like Tetraodontidae (blowfish) they have the ability to inflate themselves. Their inflated size combined with their spines make them extremely difficult to swallow. They may be poisonous, through the accumulation of tetrodotoxin or ciguatera.[1]


There are currently 3 recognized species in this genus:[2]


  1. ^ a b Lieske, E. & Myers, R.F. (2004): Coral reef guide; Red Sea London, HarperCollins ISBN 0-00-715986-2
  2. ^ Matsuura, K. (2014): Taxonomy and systematics of tetraodontiform fishes: a review focusing primarily on progress in the period from 1980 to 2014. Ichthyological Research, 62 (1): 72-113.