Tetraodon leiurus Puffer Fish Lair

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Photo 1


Photo 1 courtesy of K.R. Baker, who is a fellow enthusiast. He has been experimenting with breeding the T. leiurus. He has had success keeping a number of individuals in one tank, but I caution that they were young when placed together, and that helps with the tolerance level. One of the females lays eggs fairly frequently, but the eggs tend to get fungus, or never hatch. Kevin is experimenting with peat, softer water and low pH, since these puffs originate from peat swamps in Asia. The puffers court, and clear a section of gravel into a hollow where the eggs are laid. We have talked about using a peat diver tank like Killifish breeders, hoping perhaps the milt will have a chance to fertilize the eggs with the current interrupted by the partition. The next battle will be feeding the fry properly!

I find this species to be hardy, and very tolerant of a broad range of water parameters. I also have noticed a definite bad reaction to bright lights. This is probably due to their natural habitat, which with a peat swamp, would be dark water, with lots of tannin etc. blocking the light source. They see very well in the dark, as midnight trips to the fridge for water have testified. They see me pass by the tanks even in pitch dark.

Keep an eye out for fish that look different when viewing tanks of this species. Other species are often mixed in, and while bleached due to stress, the collectors and the distributors may not notice. Other rare species found mixed in have been T. abei, T. baileyi, T. palembangensis and T. barbatus. Checking tanks of T. suvattii is also a good idea as some of these species also inhabit the same river system.