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So my family has fallen in love with puffers recently. I have a 30 gallon tank that I am in the process of remodeling and would like to put some puffers into. I have a few questions:

Would it be better to keep green spotted puffers or figure 8 puffers? Can either species have other (non puffer) fish in the tank with them? How many could I put into the tank?

Basically, I'm just looking for any puffer info I can find. Anything you can tell me would be great :)
 

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It's hard not to fall in love with puffers if you see them in a store. I have always found their unique shape and swimming patterns very attractive. However, while I have drooled over puffers many times, I have never actually gone ahead and bought one. The reason for that is that I always read up on puffers before making a purchase, and found I couldn't provide the care they deserve.

1. Puffers have unique food requirements - mostly snails and crustaceans, and it is questionable whether you can adequately care for them by feeding flake or pellet food.

2. Puffers have unique water requirements - many need brackish water, and it is questionable whether you can adequately care for them by acclimatizing them to freshwater.

3. Puffers have a reputation for being fin nippers - they make very poor tank mates for most other fish or even other puffers.

The first thing you should do if considering to purchase a puffer is to join a forum that specializes in giving advice regarding puffers, so that you can get the latest info on their care requirements. Asking in a cichlid forum will only get you half-baked advice like you are getting from me :wink:

Certainly buying a puffer just because your kids think it's cute is a very bad idea!

Best of luck
 

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For their diet you could raise cherry shrimp... they have a reputation of breeding easily, and they look pretty good too. The two puffers you mentioned, figure eight and green spotted, are both brackish. But if you would rather a tiny freshwater alternative you could go for indian dwarf puffers.
 

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I have keept puffers and honestly I find that alot of people make it more complicated then it really is, same as Tropheus cichlid and other fish that might require that u do a little homework and actualy stick to the guidelines you find abourt water quality and diet.

I'v kept greenspotted puffers in a freshwater tank, with only a small amount of salt. No more then I would add to my african tanks and they did fine for years.

Snails are so easy to breed that most ppl consider them a pest!, a small bare tank can be used to simply "farm" the snails you need to feed them. Unless you have other tanks where u can harvest snails from. You can also feed them with shellfish like shrimps as mentioned above. A lot of shrimps breed like crazy, a few cherry shrimps can hatch 100's of new shrimps in no time and from there it just rockets off.

I would not keep tank mates with the puffer, you can add a feeder fish in there that the puffers will eat. But I would only feed one fish at a time, no reason to let them "live" in there and get stressed out untill it's there turn to be eaten.
 

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Pali said:
fish that might require that u do a little homework and actually stick to the guidelines you find about water quality and diet.
That is my point precisely. I simply wanted to warn people not to buy a puffer, throw it in a tank with a bunch of other fish, and expect it to eat flake food with the rest of them and be happy.
 

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Take a look at Amazon Puffers (Colomesus asellus). They are more peacefull than most puffers and are rarely nippy. I kept one in a hardy community for a while, until the poor thing had a run-in with a powerhead. However, 30 gallons would be a bit small, because they are so active.
 

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CoolCichlid said:
Puffers are amazingly beautiful, but they don't puff too often.
Which is a good thing. They only do it when they feel threatened and it puts a ton of stress on their bodies. In the time that I had mine, I only saw her puff once. Sure, it was cool to see, but it was tense waiting for her to calm down and return back to normal.
 
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