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loxodonta51 12-04-2012 03:57 PM

Porcupine Puffer Problems
I have a 135 gallon aquarium with about 100 lbs of live rock; I have a 5" volitan lionfish, a 4" porcupine puffer, a 3.5" foxface, and a 1" damsel. When I measured my water parameters over the weekend, the ammonia and nitrites were 0, nitrates were 30, temperature was 76, salinity was 1.023, and pH was 8.1.

Over the last week or so, my puffer who I have had for a few weeks has become much more withdrawn. He is dark, will lay on the bottom most of the time, and hides behind the live rock. When I first got him, he was extremely social and at the front of the aquarium all the time. He is still eating regularly. I am feeding him and the lionfish a mix of shrimp, krill, scallops, and squid. I have had him about 3 weeks. His eyes are still iridescent.

I was gone for Thanksgiving for four days during which my roommate fed the tank inhabitants. The herbivores were overfed during this time, which caused an algae bloom. However, I have gotten that largely under control with water changes. The lionfish and foxface seem unaffected. My puffer did have a spat with the lionfish when he was first introduced (the lion was quite aggressive towards him), but that seems to have subsided.

I would love to have any suggestions about what to do for my puffer.

Terrance 12-04-2012 11:31 PM

How often do you feed him and how much per feeding?

You got any skimmer or growing macroalgae?

How often and how much water changes do you do?

loxodonta51 12-04-2012 11:57 PM

I feed him daily and usually 3-4 pieces of food per feeding.

I do not have either.

I have been doing a 20% water change every Wednesday and on Sundays have added a 10% water change for the last two weeks.

Terrance 12-05-2012 12:14 AM

I suggest getting as least an HOB skimmer to improve water quality. Usually without a skimmer or growimg macroalgae, you need to do 50% water change every week. Skimmer would definitely help a lot in addition to your 20% water changes. Every once in a while do a really big water change instead of several small water changes. Bigger water changes take out more polluted water.

Try not to be too generous when you feed your puffer. Feed until tummy slightly rounded. They dont starve easily no matter how much they beg. When he gets a little bigger, you will need to feed every other day but give bigger portions. Eventually you will be feeding 1-2 times weekly when he gets really big.

cashmoney6980 12-05-2012 07:03 PM

X2 with Terrance.

Both lionfish and puffers make a large mess while they eat, then after they eat (poo). A skimmer I'm sure would greatly help the situation. Lions are a lot hardier than puffers, so that may be why he's not showing any distress. Some people even use lions to cycle their tanks..(although i wouldn't recommend it)

But I would also have to highly recommend a skimmer, and larger water changes until you acquire a skimmer

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