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Old 07-18-2013, 01:38 PM   #1
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Easiest Puffer to keep

I am thinking about getting a puffer fish and was wondering which one is the easiest to take care of. I saw a puffer for sale at Walmart but I do not remember what it was called. The lady working their said it was a brackish fish. My local pet store said they could order me one when I decided what to get. Are brackish fish harder to keep?
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Old 07-18-2013, 02:14 PM   #2
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If you want a freshwater puffer, dwarf puffers are fairly easy to care for. The species you saw was probably the green spotted puffer. Those fish grow to 6 inches in length and need saltwater. Dwarf puffers are pure freshwater, will eat brine shrimp, and reach only 1 inch in length. Like all puffers, dwarf puffers need to eat snails to trim their beaks.
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Old 07-18-2013, 02:26 PM   #3
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I'm with bettaowner on this. The easiest is probably the dwarf/pea/malbar puffer, which is freshwater. The only reason, IMO that is it easier is the freshwater aspect. As bettaowner said that was probably the green spotted puffer, super cute, but eventually brackish and need I think 30+ gallons... I've never had anything other than a dwarf puffer so my knowledge isn't that advanced when it comes to the others. Also, contrary to what bettaowner said, the dwarf puffers don't need snails. For some reason mine actually refuses to eat them... Yeah weird.

If you want any help on the dwarf puffers feel free to ask! But if you're still looking into the green spotted puffers, I'm probably no help! Good Luck!!
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Old 07-18-2013, 02:29 PM   #4
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Brackish aren't really hard to keep the only difference from FW is when you do water changes you have to have salt ready for those water changes and that can get expensive. BW water fish are pretty resilient to changes in water parameters so its much easier than SW. If you don't mind brackish and want a smaller tank 20-30 gallons you could do a F8 puffer. Green spotted puffer (the fish you probably saw at wallmart) should go in a 55 because they get to be the size of small nerf footballs.

If you want pure FW the Dwarf is the way to go (easiest to maintain). If your LFS will order fish than red eye's are pretty cool. SAP's or Amazon puffers are nice freshwater fish but they need to be kept in large tanks and in schools. There beaks grow faster than other puffers so they need a steady diet of snails and other shellfish.

I have allot of experience with GSP's so if you want to go that route please ask away.
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Old 07-18-2013, 03:06 PM   #5
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I wouldn't mind a brackish tank. I already have two freshwater and want to eventually get a saltwater tank. I believe it was a green spotted puffer at Walmart. I am thinking either green spotted or figure 8. I like the figure 8 puffers. Would a 20 long work? I am trying to talk my niece by marriage into giving me her large tank. I believe it is 60 gallons. It looks to be about twice as big as my 29 gallon tank. She currently has it empty. She let it get nasty and all the fish died. She and her kids are always getting new pets and then not taking care of them. I have ended up with many of their pets after they get tired of them. Wish they would just stop. If I get it, I am going to use it for my freshwater fish and then use the 29 gallon for the puffer. If not, I have been wanting a 20 long to do an underwater post apocalyptic scenery tank with a decaying city scape. What should I be buying up for a brackish tank equipment wise?
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Old 07-18-2013, 03:31 PM   #6
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you need a mixing station. pump, heater, and water container. think of an easy way to get the new water to your tank.

refractometer, or hydrometer (although its much easier to get the wrong salinity).

once you get to the high end spectrum of brackish water, then get a skimmer.
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Old 07-19-2013, 10:27 AM   #7
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20 long is fine for a singe F8. For mixing all you need is a ruber tote or a 5 gallon bucket, hydrometer, power head. Mix salt and water 24 hours ahead of time put a power head in the bucket to keep the salt mixing. I never used a heater in my mixing. swap out 5 gallons (25%) weekly and you should be fine.
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Old 07-19-2013, 11:52 AM   #8
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I currently have two figure 8 puffers in my 75 gallon BW and been running for almost a year now. They have great personality and one of them gets all excited when one of my nieces come over. The one thing I learned bout puffers is make sure the tank is well established cause if its not. They will not live for that long. When I do water changes, I usually do bout 20-25 gallons at time.


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Old 07-19-2013, 07:14 PM   #9
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Thanks everyone for all the info. I am sure I will have tons more questions. I already have an extra powerhead. I also have several buckets and a couple of plastic bins. I will have to buy the other stuff. Still trying to get a tank for cheap. If I cannot find one used I will give up an buy one. Trying to plan out where I want to put my tanks when I get my 35 ft. tiny home done. My sister said I was building a pet store by the looks of it. LOL.

I am going to do lots of research on the figure 8 puffer and be sure I know how to take care it right before getting it. I am working on building up store credit at the local pet store so that will help with some of the stuff. She has more salt water and brackish fish than freshwater. She insists that salt water tanks are easier to take care of. She is trading me my last batch of mystery snails for some neon tetras right now. Do puffers eat snails? Some things I read said yes they need them but others say no. Which is it? I currently have a lot of baby ghost shrimp so I will have a nice supply of those if they eat them. Plus I have blue pearl culls and ramshorn snails. Everybody is breading like crazy. My 29 gallon is covered with shrimp. LOL

Here is the list of supplies I am working on for the puffer.

Tank
hygrometer
heater
filter (any recommendations for a brackish tank one?)
thermometer
Protein skimmer? (is it needed)
marine salt (any particular kind I need?)
reef type structure (do puffers need caves and such?)

Feel free to recommend other items
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Old 07-20-2013, 12:28 AM   #10
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no protein skimmet since f8 is low-end brackish fish.
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Old 07-20-2013, 01:26 PM   #11
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Thanks Terrance. That will save me some money.
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