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Old 02-04-2004, 04:49 PM   #1
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Puffer Fish and Cleanup Crews

Hi, I'm totally new to saltwater, and have just started up our 70 gallon tank. I'm trying to look ahead to what fish we want to add once our tank finishes cycling, and I really want to get some sort of Puffer fish. The question I have is, I know that puffers eat invertebrates, so I assume that means I can't have a cleanup crew? If not, what should I do (I do plan on getting a skimmer) to make sure I don't have a whole bunch of unwanted growth/gunk?

Also, are there any suggestions for a certain type of puffer fish for beginners?

Thanks!
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Old 02-04-2004, 06:09 PM   #2
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If not, what should I do (I do plan on getting a skimmer) to make sure I don't have a whole bunch of unwanted growth/gunk?
Frequent waterchanges and vacuuming of the substrate will help as well as aggressive skimming.

The dogface puffer is one of the more common and easier ones. Most are hardy, but prone to ick, quarantine and hyposalinity are a must with this fish.
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Old 02-05-2004, 01:44 PM   #3
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Thanks for the advice. I looked around my LFS when I went to go buy live rock, but only saw a bunch of stars and stripes puffers. I'll have to keep an eye out for the dog face puffers.

Also, are there any suggestions as to what a good group of fish would be for a 70 gallon tank with a puffer? I'm thinking of starting off with a pair of ocellaris clown fish, and maybe ending with a blue tang since I read they eat algae.
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Old 02-05-2004, 03:47 PM   #4
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I have a stars and stripes puffer in my tank along with a huma trigger and a panther grouper, they get along fine. No inverts, moved them to a 10 gal setup after a few came up missing (missing legs, that is). The puffer is a cool fish to have IMO but is a big eater for sure.
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Old 02-08-2004, 04:45 PM   #5
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This is certainly not the norm but I have a porcupine puffer that has been living in my reef tank for about 5 weeks now and has yet to bother a thing. Leaves all my snails and crabs alone as well as anemones. I dont have any shrimp although. In the long term I will move him to my 125gl but so far he is happy as can be in the 55. I vac my CC at least twice a month and have a lawnmower blenny for algea control. I absolutely love my porc, he has so much personality, he recognizes when I walk in the room and will eat right from my hand. Welcome to the hobby and enjoy.
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Old 02-08-2004, 09:53 PM   #6
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we have a porcupine puffer at the store that likes to be petted, and will also eat right from ur hand. I have to say its the most personality i've ever seen in a fish
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Old 02-09-2004, 11:26 AM   #7
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i had some big thinstripe hermits that got along with a huma huma, a dogface puffer, and some others and they turned sand over like nobodys business. sand was brown with diatoms without them. enthusiastic scavengers too. i also had a big snail that lived under the sand. so in my opinion, theres no need to cancel the cleanup crew, just scale them up!
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Old 02-09-2004, 06:26 PM   #8
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That's good to hear, thanks! I guess maybe we can try a few hermit crabs in there to see how they do. What kind of lighting do they need? We just have the light that came with our tank, I'm not even sure what kind of bulb it is. Not sure if it would be sufficient to keep crabs or shrimp.
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Old 02-10-2004, 01:56 PM   #9
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Crabs and shrimp really need no special lighting to the best of my knowledge. If you think about it they don't feed through photosynthesis so why would the lighting make a difference. As far as shrimp go I would be careful as they can be expensive and more apt to be eaten.
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Old 02-11-2004, 03:39 PM   #10
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Another question about the puffer - we haven't yet gotten a protein skimmer, and I was hoping to wait another few weeks before I got one (to keep our monthly expense down). I'm planning on getting a small puffer - will it be okay for a few weeks without a skimmer? Or will even a small puffer produce too much waste?
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