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Old 01-27-2013, 05:06 PM   #1
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Feeding porcupine puffer

I'm getting a porcupine puffer and want to be prepared. So how and what should I feed it. Live food? Pellets? Flakes?start it out in live then switch it to frozen? Will it eat my cleaner snails? Will it eat on my sand sifter starfish?
Any info will be appreciated. Thanks
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Old 01-27-2013, 09:58 PM   #2
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I fed krill, brine, mysis, and clams. Occasionally I'd feed table shrimp or squid from grocery store. I never got into feeding live fish. Also mine never ate any of my cuc.
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Old 01-27-2013, 10:01 PM   #3
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Also something to look out for. My porc would greet me every time I came into room or near tank. And unfortunately he would run his eyes on the glass. They ended up getting infected, so I took him back to my lfs for help with healing him, he passed away 2 weeks later. Just something to keep in mind.
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Old 01-27-2013, 11:06 PM   #4
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Oh man, that sucks , sorry. Thanks for the help. So they are really personable? How do you keep their teeth from growing too long?
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Old 01-27-2013, 11:16 PM   #5
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The clams. They'll naw on the shell. They're very personable. Mine would eat out of my hands.
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Old 01-27-2013, 11:20 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Dmann View Post
Oh man, that sucks , sorry. Thanks for the help. So they are really personable? How do you keep their teeth from growing too long?
I've been researching puffers here for the last few months as I've always been interested in them and have finally taken the steps to have one. Unfortunately I don't have a large enough tank, or space for one, to house a puffer like the porcupine. What size tank will yours be living in? They are adorable though and very personable.

Here some info on diet, copied and pasted.

"They usually do not consume fish of any type, and often do not even get a meal every day. Keep this, and the following in mind when feeding your pufferfish: they need fresh, meaty seafoods in the shell (shrimp, prawns, crab legs, oysters, mussels, crayfish, clams, etc. – all available at your local grocery) as a staple and to keep your puffer’s teeth worn down.

Many puffers die from improper diets, and although this can take a few years, it will happen if they are not fed a variety of foods, and if fresh seafood is not a staple.

As a final note, do not feed your puffer freshwater “feeder” fish – ever. This is a completely inappropriate food source for any marine animal, and can cause intestinal blockage leading to demise."



The 'shell' part of the food offered is what keeps their teeth trimmed. Also, be careful with krill for puffers as it is known to be addicting and can cause lockjaw.

As for your CUC I'd say that will depend on the individual puffer, so I wouldn't be surprised if some of your CUC is eaten.
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Old 01-28-2013, 12:54 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by amanda_marie View Post

I've been researching puffers here for the last few months as I've always been interested in them and have finally taken the steps to have one. Unfortunately I don't have a large enough tank, or space for one, to house a puffer like the porcupine. What size tank will yours be living in? They are adorable though and very personable.

Here some info on diet, copied and pasted.

"They usually do not consume fish of any type, and often do not even get a meal every day. Keep this, and the following in mind when feeding your pufferfish: they need fresh, meaty seafoods in the shell (shrimp, prawns, crab legs, oysters, mussels, crayfish, clams, etc. – all available at your local grocery) as a staple and to keep your puffer’s teeth worn down.

Many puffers die from improper diets, and although this can take a few years, it will happen if they are not fed a variety of foods, and if fresh seafood is not a staple.

As a final note, do not feed your puffer freshwater “feeder” fish – ever. This is a completely inappropriate food source for any marine animal, and can cause intestinal blockage leading to demise."

The 'shell' part of the food offered is what keeps their teeth trimmed. Also, be careful with krill for puffers as it is known to be addicting and can cause lockjaw.

As for your CUC I'd say that will depend on the individual puffer, so I wouldn't be surprised if some of your CUC is eaten.
Thanks for the good info, so do I just drop a whole shrimp in there? Open the clam or leave it closed an let him open it? What about crab legs. How big?

I have a 180g FOWLR setup. I should be picking it up by the end if the week I am excited
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Old 01-28-2013, 12:55 AM   #8
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Picking the puffer up, the tank is cycled and ready. I have a foxface in there now.
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Old 01-28-2013, 12:58 AM   #9
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I open clams, I would do little pieces of shrimp, don't over feed. They dont really know when to stop eating. You'll start to see a little bulge in their stomachs.
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Old 01-28-2013, 01:02 AM   #10
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Thanks for the good info, so do I just drop a whole shrimp in there? Open the clam or leave it closed an let him open it? What about crab legs. How big?

I have a 180g FOWLR setup. I should be picking it up by the end if the week I am excited
I'd say a lot of that would depend on the size of the puffer and the size of the food. It seems common to feed a younger/smaller puffer until their belly is slightly rounded daily with one day each week for fasting. As they age/grow the feedings would be reduced to like every other day, every two days, etc. Be careful though, as they'll happily overeat.

Just to mention about shrimp (or any other seafood that may apply) get shell on as that would be best for trimming the teeth.

I would think the puffer would have to be rather larger to crush a clam, but again that would depend on the size of the clam. If you open the clam the puffer would still be trimming his teeth in a way when scraping the meat from the clam. I know when it comes to feeding snails you feed the size of the puffers eye but that is a food that is more easily crushed in one bite.

I hope someone can give you more advice in terms of the size of food though you will probably have more of an idea once you see the puffer in person.

I haven't gotten my puffer yet so those are things I'll figure out in time too, I hope Though, I'm getting a toby, so much smaller than a porcupine.

By the way, jealous! I'd love to have a tank of that size and the foxface is another of my favorites. They're beautiful fish!
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