Showing posts with label Puffer Fish. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Puffer Fish. Show all posts


PUFFERS - Freshwater, Brackish Or Marine?

Blackspotted puffer, Arothron nigropunctatus, ...
Blackspotted puffer, Arothron nigropunctatus
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The reason most puffers die within the first months of captivity is that the local fish store fails tremendously to inform their customers about the requirements of their new fish. I have seen many puffers either mislabeled or not labeled at all in freshwater tanks, slowly dying. The key is to know what species you are getting (even if your fish store does not tell you) and to know what kind of water they need.

This is a quick guide to determine which puffers are from freshwater, brackish and marine.

Freshwater Puffers:
Auriglobus modestus; --- Bronze puffer
Carinotetraodon borneensis; --- Bornean redeyed puffer
Carinotetraodon irrubesco; --- Red tailed redeye puffer
Carinotetraodon salivator; --- Striped redeye puffer
Carinotetraodon travancoricus; --- Dwarf Puffer
Colomesus asellus; --- South American Puffer
Monotrete abei; --- Abei Puffer
Tetraodon baileyi; --- 'Hairy' puffer
Tetraodon barbatus
Tetraodon cochinchinensis; --- Fangs Puffer
Tetraodon cutcutia; --- Common Puffer
Tetraodon duboisi; --- Dubois' Freshwater Puffer
Tetraodon lineatus; ---Fahaka puffer
Tetraodon mbu; --- Mbu Puffer
Tetraodon miurus; --- Congo Puffer
Tetraodon palembangensis; --- Palembang Puffer
Tetraodon pustulatus; --- Cross River Puffer
Tetraodon suvattii; --- Arrowhead Puffer
Tetraodon turgidus; --- Brown Puffer

Brackish Puffers
Colomesus psittacus; --- Banded Puffer
Tetraodon biocellatus; --- Figure Eight Puffer
Tetraodon erythrotaenia; --- Red-striped Toadfish
Tetraodon fluviatilis; --- Ceylon Puffer
Tetraodon nigroviridis; --- Green Spotted Puffer
Tetraodon Sabahensis; --- Giant Spotted Puffer

Marine Puffers
Arothron caerulopunctatus; --- Blue-spotted Puffer
Arothron diadematus; --- Masked Puffer
Arothron hispidus; --- White-spotted puffer
Arothron manilensis; --- Narrow-lined Puffer
Arothron mappa; --- Map puffer
Arothron meleagris; --- Guineafowl Puffer
Arothron nigropunctatus; --- Dog-faced Puffer
Arothron reticularis; --- Reticulated Puffer
Arothron stellatus; --- Starry Toadfish
Canthigaster bennetti; --- Bennett's Sharpnose Puffer
Canthigaster coronata; --- Crowned Puffer
Canthigaster papua; --- Papuan Toby
Canthigaster rostrata; --- Caribbean Sharpnose Puffer
Canthigaster solandri; --- Spotted Sharpnose
Canthigaster valentini; --- Saddled Puffer
Diodon holocanthus; --- Porcupine Puffer
Sphoeroides annulatus; --- Bullseye Puffer
Sphoeroides marmoratus; --- Guinean Puffer
Takifugu niphobles; --- Niphobles Puffer
Takifugu oblongus; --- Lattice Blaasop
Takifugu ocellatus; --- Fugu Puffer
Takifugu pardalis; --- Panther Puffer
Takifugu rubripes; --- Tiger Puffer


Bring More Puff to Your Aquarium With Freshwater PUFFER FISH

Tetraodon nigroviridis 1.jpg
Photo: Wikipedia (CC)
Are you planning to keep a freshwater PUFFER FISH in your aquarium? Well, before you buy a puffer, make sure that you know everything about it. This type of fish is not your typical freshwater specimen because it requires extra care and attention.

To get you started, here is a concise guide to freshwater puffer fish and what you need to do to keep it healthy and happy.

Know Your Puffer
A lot of pet shops often mislabel their fish. In fact, some store owners are really not familiar when it comes to puffers. They do not know how to distinguish freshwater varieties from brackish or marine species. It is your responsibility to do the preliminary research. You have to know the different freshwater species of puffer fish including their habitat requirements, diet, behavior, and proper care.
Basically, there are at least 40 species of freshwater puffers. However, only a few of them can be found commercially. To make things simpler, it is advisable to narrow down your options to the common puffer fish available in stores and pet shops.

1. Carinotetraodon Travancoricus
This specie is generally known as the Dwarf puffer fish. In some stores, it is labeled as BB puffer or Pea puffer. As the name implies, it is a small puffer fish that grows to about 22 millimeters or less than one inch. It normally has a yellowish color with spots of green and black.
The Dwarf puffer requires a tank that can filled with at least 10 gallons of water. You can make this puffer fish happy if its tank has a sandy substrate with well designed hiding places such as vegetation or big rocks. Like most puffer fish, the Dwarf can become extremely territorial. However, it can coexist with its own kind and could live peacefully with other tank mates.

Dwarf puffers love to feed on small bits of snails, shrimps, and blood worms. Feeding should be twice a day and adults must be given a regular diet of shelled foods so that their beaks will not grow too big.

2. Monotrete Turgidus
Another cute little puffer fish is the turgidus or commonly known as Brown puffer. This is a very personable fish but it is less active than the Dwarf species. It prefers to lurk and hide at the bottom of the tank and will only show itself when it is feeding time.
The Brown puffer grows to about six inches. Its back is greenish with black spots. The belly side is usually brown to grayish with no remarkable spots. This puffer fish thrives well in a 20-gallon tank with water pH level of about 6.0 at 80 degrees Fahrenheit. It prefers sandy or pebbly substrate with lots of vegetation and rocks where it can hide during the day. You have to take note that a Brown puffer is a terrible territorial fish. It is very aggressive and will probably eat other tank mates if given the chance.

You can feed this puffer fish with blood worms, chunks of fish meat, shrimps, and krill. As it grows older, you have to feed it with crab legs, clams, or mollusks.

3. Tetraodon Lineatus
Although the lineatus is rarely kept by hobbyists, you may want to try keeping this kind of puffer fish if you love to face big challenges. This specie is generally known as the Nile puffer or Fahaka. It has distinct yellowish lines on its body and can grow so big that a standard tank may not be enough for it. An adult Fahaka is about 18 inches long so you need a wider tank that can be filled with at least 150 gallons of water.

The Fahaka puffer is endemic to Africa, more specifically in the Nile River and its tributaries. However, you could find this fish in some exotic pet shops. This freshwater puffer fish will look marvelous in your aquarium but remember that it requires extra attention and maintenance.

The Fahaka lineatus is known for its extreme aggressiveness and territorial behavior. It will hunt its tank mates and eat them. You can feed this puffer with crustaceans. It also loves snails, shrimps, fish fillet, blood worms, wrigglers, and feeder insects. To make sure that its beak will not grow too big, you should give your Fahaka a regular diet of crab legs, clams, and other shelled feeds.
Additional Tips When Keeping Freshwater Puffer Fish

As stated earlier, some stores often mislabel their freshwater puffers. So you have to watch out for the Green Spotted Puffer (GSP), a brackish-water fish but commonly labeled as freshwater specie. The GSP has distinct green spots on its body. A full-grown adult is about 6 inches long. Because it thrives in brackish water, it will die if you put it in a freshwater tank. If you already have a GSP, make sure to increase the level of water salinity in your tank.

When introducing your puffer fish to its new environment, make sure that it is properly acclimatized. Keep the fish in its plastic bag and allow it to float in the tank for about 15 to 20 minutes to level the water temperature. If you will not do this, your puffer fish could die from shock.

Lastly, do not induce your puffer fish to inflate itself. This is stressful and hazardous for your fish. A puffer inflates its body as a form of defensive action especially when it feels threatened. This action brings considerable amount of stress to your fish which could be harmful. But don't worry because almost all puffer fish will inflate themselves if they want to. Fish enthusiasts usually call it "practice puffing" and it is delightful to see. Be sure to keep your digital camera ready so that you can take good photos when your puffer practices its puffing ability.

Keeping freshwater puffer fish is a good hobby. But always remember that you have to take good care of your puffer to keep it healthy and happy. You have to give ample space and clean habitat for your fish. Most importantly, feed your puffer fish with nutritious and delectable seafood.



The green spotted puffer, Tetraodon nigroviridis, is indigenous to Africa and Asia. Their natural habitat ranges from Sri Lanka, throughout Indonesia and north to China and south to Africa. Despite the fact that this species is frequently kept in freshwater tanks and sold as a freshwater fish by many retailers, this is a brackish fish. They inhabit brackish costal estuaries, lagoons and river and stream openings. During the rainy season green spotted puffers frequently make their way into seasonal floodplains.

English: Tetraodon nigroviridis - The green pu...
Tetraodon nigroviridis - The green puffer fish   (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Although this fish can survive in a strictly freshwater environment a salinity level of 1.005-08 for juveniles and 1.018-22 for adult puffers will insure optimum health and longevity. That said; green spotted puffers can be successfully drip acclimated to either freshwater or saltwater. Puffers are commonly kept by saltwater aquarists. As juveniles, puffers swim back and forth between fresh, salt and brackish water conditions. As the fish matures it will instinctively migrate to a saltwater environment. A puffer fish maintained in proper water conditions can frequently live in excess of ten years. A puffer raised in a freshwater environment will not reach its full growth potential nor have the vibrant coloration of a saltwater puffer.

Many novice aquarists make the mistake of adding a green spotted puffer to their community tank because they are so adorable. Their bulging eyes, rounded bellies and leopard spot patterns indeed make them a unique addition to a freshwater tank. Disney movies have undoubtedly led to the increased popularity of this fish among aquarium owners. Make no mistake; green spotted puffers are natural born killers. They do not make good community fish. This species is best delegated to a mono-species tank for both its brackish water needs and its predatory instinct. Although puffers are not shoaling fish they are tolerant of conspecifics. This makes them even more eligible for a mono-species tank.

Puffers have rock hard beaks and razor sharp teeth. In the wild their diet consists of other fish, crustaceans, mollusks and insects. These voracious carnivores can bite right through hard shell clams. It is nothing for them to take a hefty bite out of another fish in a community tanks setting. Juvenile puffers (especially when introduced to an established population) may seem docile perhaps even timid. But it is only a matter of time before their predatory nature takes over. If you choose to disregard this warning, be prepared to loose members of your community tank as your puffer matures and establishes its own territorial boundaries in its new surroundings. Extreme caution should be used in choosing a puffers tank mates. Larger, more aggressive species have a better chance of holding their own against these tenacious little buggers. Avoid mixing them with long finned species such as bettas and angelfish. Puffers are notorious fin nippers. If fish suddenly start dying or have segments of fin or body tissue missing you puffer is almost certainly the culprit. Puffers become far more aggressive as adults. They can reach up to six inches long when fully mature. Keep this in mind when deciding what other species to mix them with. The adorable little puffer in the fish store is just a baby.

In order to thrive, puffers need a high protein diet. While flake food is acceptable, additional protein supplements will help maintain a puffer's long-term health and color palette. Young puffer fish can be fed frozen or freeze-dried krill or plankton. Ghost shrimp, and small insects, worms and snails also make appropriate menu items. Snails are considered an essential part of a proper puffer's nutritional regiment. Mollusks and crustaceans are a large part of a puffer's dietary intake in the wild. A puffer's teeth will continue to grow even after it has reached full maturity. Their teeth can actually overgrow to the point of filling their entire mouth cavity. This can and will lead to eventual starvation. Dietary supplements of hard shelled mollusks will help keep a puffer's teeth trimmed. Adult puffers can be fed scallops, shrimp, whole mussels, clams, oysters, crayfish and even crab legs. Puffers are messy eaters. They generate a lot of waste both in expulsion and in uneaten food particles. Routine partial water changes are essential for optimum health.

The ideal water temperature for this species is 78-82 °F. An alkaline based pH of around 8 is considered perfect. Adding Aragonite or crushed coral to your substrate will help naturally establish stable alkaline parameters. A minimum tank size of 30 gallons is recommended. An abundance of tank décor to break the puffer's line of sight and help it to establish its own territorial boundaries is highly recommended. This will help diminish aggressive behavior. Puffers are accomplished jumpers. As juveniles they will jump from one coastal puddle to another in search of food. An aquarium with a tightly fitting tank top is essential for the fish's safety.

Green spotted puffers are not raised on fish farms. They are caught from the wild for the fish trade industry. Internal parasite infestation is common. Be sure to choose an active specimen with a well rounded belly, a colorful palette and clear rather than foggy eyes. Keeping your puffer in an isolation tank for a period of no less than one week is highly recommended. Food stuff soaked in Discomed by Aquatronics will eliminate internal parasite infestation.

The ability of a puffer fish to bloat its body is a survival mechanism against predation. A puffer's body can expand to over twice its normal size. This is accomplished by the fish rapidly inflating its stomach with water. Despite what you see in Disney movies you may never actually see your puffer fish puff. Puffers only inflate their stomachs when they are in high stress situations or in fear of being ingested by another predator. Green spotted puffers, like all puffer fish, are poisonous. Their skin and organs contain tetrodotoxin, a highly potent neurotoxin whose affects in small does can cause a euphoric state of mind. Puffer poisoning is responsible for the deaths for several daring Japanese sushi enthusiasts every year.

Green spotted puffers are not bred in captivity for commercial purposes. There are reports of them being successfully bred by home aquarists. We were unable to find any detailed information on the breeding of this species.

    By Stephen J Broy
    The hottest new trend in aquarium ownership is pet jellyfish. Jellyfish require a specially designed Jellyfish Aquarium Fish Tank to remain alive and healthy. Jellyfish aquariums are easier to maintain than a traditional saltwater tank. Pet Moon Jellyfish have become exceptionally popular in recent years with home aquarists both for their unparalleled elegance and ease of care. The market for moon jellies has increased to the point that two US based websites are now tank raising these exotic creatures to keep pace with the growing demand.
    Article Source: EzineArticles

English: Tetraodon nigroviridis - The green puffer fish Deutsch: Tetraodon nigroviridis - Der grüne Kugelfisch (Photo credit: Wikipedia)