Triggerfish with ‘human teeth’ attacks diver in Red Sea, Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt

A US diver was left screaming in pain when a fish with “human teeth” chased and attacked him while he was diving in Egypt.

Shocking footage captured the moment the marine animal with protruding teeth took a bite out of the diver’s leg – leaving colleagues terrified, The Sun reports.

Alex Pikul, from Alabama, was diving in the Red Sea off the coast of Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, when he encountered a triggerfish.

He was reportedly in a group of eight divers, led by the owner of boutique scuba diving company Mar Hosted Trips, Maira, when a strong current forced them to change their course.

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The group then ended up swimming over a nest of eggs before a male triggerfish, who was thought to be protecting his offspring, launched an assault and began chasing them.

“I [thought I was] in the clear because the triggerfish swam off so I turned around and swam away following the rest of the group, but all of a sudden it chomped on my leg,” Mr Pikul said.

“The way I felt it, I thought it probably broke skin and I would be bleeding – you can hear me shout out some cuss words underwater.”

Triggerfish are so named due to their aggressive nature and are particularly protective when guarding nests.

They are also known to charge at and bite intruders.

But Mr Pikul said he isn’t holding a grudge against the fish, despite the “challenging” dive.

“I’ve seen triggerfish before but when I saw the video of it coming back I thought it was hilarious – you never really get that close of a shot of what their teeth look like,” he said.

“It’s a face only a mother could love – goofy, ugly-looking fish with human-like teeth. They look too big for his mouth, almost like he’s got dentures or something.

“The bite left a bruise and welt in the shape of its teeth for the rest of the trip which was quite funny.”

Triggerfish are often found in relatively shallow, coastal habitats and photos have previously showed them with their human-like teeth clearly visible.

There are around 40 triggerfish species and they are often brightly coloured, living in tropical and subtropical waters.

Males are known to be territorial and aggressive, charging at intruders, according to National Geographic.

The outlet said the fish use “very tough teeth and jaws to take on sea urchins, flipping them over to get at their bellies, which are armed with fewer spines”.

The largest species is the stone triggerfish, which reaches up to 1m long and is found in the Eastern Pacific from Mexico to Chile.

In 2018 a fish with “human teeth” shocked villagers in Indonesia.

The bucked-toothed creature, thought to be an emperor fish, was caught in the town of Kimindores, in the West Papua region of the country.

This story originally appeared on The Sun and is republished here with permission

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