Getting a Puffer for the first time - Advice Needed

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Getting a Puffer for the first time - Advice Needed

Postby Lukedt95 on Mon Jul 02, 2012 7:34 pm

First off, sorry if this is in the wrong section.

So I've decided to get a Puffer fish (Probably an Eight figure puffer) but I need some advice.

If I were to get an eight figure puffer what size tank would I need? I've heard 15 gallon minimum, I could get a 20 gallon tank.

What sort of things should I put in the tank? I've heard they get bored easily and like to explore?

How much would I look at paying for a Puffer fish? I live in the UK

And lastly what Puffer fish would you recommend for a beginner and what tank would it need?

Any help is appreciated.
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Re: Getting a Puffer for the first time - Advice Needed

Postby DGabbs on Mon Jul 02, 2012 9:30 pm

Hey, welcome to the forum.

I'm currently setting up a 25 gallon tank to house a figure 8 puffer. I have put some pieces of base rock in and planning on adding some java fern.

20 gallon is a good size!

Heres my tank so far.
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Re: Getting a Puffer for the first time - Advice Needed

Postby bertie 83 on Tue Jul 03, 2012 2:38 am

Welcome. A 20 would make a lovely home for a f8. Should cost around £10 possibly less. Lots of decor to explore. Sg of 1.003 to 1.005. Where you from in the uk?
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Re: Getting a Puffer for the first time - Advice Needed

Postby Lukedt95 on Tue Jul 03, 2012 12:33 pm

Hey, thanks for the welcome. I'm from Burnham (South East).

I went out today to look for a Figure eight puffer, but sadly no one remotely close by said they stock them (I tried 5 places, all in varying places - Reading, Maidenhead, Bourne End etc etc), and that they wouldn't be getting any in any time soon..

They do have baby red eyed Puffer fish however, which I am now considering getting. What conditions would they require?
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Re: Getting a Puffer for the first time - Advice Needed

Postby DGabbs on Tue Jul 03, 2012 4:57 pm

If you find a small town fish store chances are you can convince them to order you a figure 8 puffer. May pay a bit more, but should be able to find one. Call first before you drive all the way over...
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Re: Getting a Puffer for the first time - Advice Needed

Postby Lukedt95 on Tue Jul 03, 2012 5:09 pm

Luckily I have a Garden centre with a Fish shop literally down the road, I'll ask if they could order one in for me.

Out of interest, while the figure eight is a baby, should I keep it in Fresh water?
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Re: Getting a Puffer for the first time - Advice Needed

Postby DGabbs on Tue Jul 03, 2012 6:19 pm

Not sure how others feel, but its probably best to get it to light brackish as soon as possibly. IF the fish came in freshwater you may want to slowly raise SG to around 1.005. No more than 1.002 per week, and make sure the tank is fully cycled before you ad your puffer.
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Re: Getting a Puffer for the first time - Advice Needed

Postby Lukedt95 on Tue Jul 03, 2012 6:27 pm

I'm waiting 10 days before I buy my Puffer, what would I need to test the Salinity of the water?
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Re: Getting a Puffer for the first time - Advice Needed

Postby Flutter on Tue Jul 03, 2012 6:31 pm

A refractometer is best though you can get by with a hydrometer.

F8s are great puffers :)
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Re: Getting a Puffer for the first time - Advice Needed

Postby DGabbs on Tue Jul 03, 2012 6:36 pm

Just waiting 10 days doesn't ensure a proper cycle, if any at all. Its really important that you read up on cycling a tank, especially with puffers. You need a bacteria source and an ammonia source. Letting a tank sit for 10 days doesn't promote a cycle. You will need a master test kit for testing water parameters during the cycle and after for weekly testing.

For salt level you can use a hydrometer or a refractometer. If you have the cash up front just order a refractometer, but if not, a hydrometer can be had for around $12. They doth do the same thing to some degree, a refractometer is jut more reliable.
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Re: Getting a Puffer for the first time - Advice Needed

Postby Lukedt95 on Tue Jul 03, 2012 6:42 pm

The guide that came with my fish tank said to leave the tank for 10 days, so that the dangerous levels of ammonia and nitrate are significantly lowered, the only thing it recommended is to buy Nutrafin Cycle to introduce ideal strains of friendly bacteria?

I'm going to read up on cycling now.
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Re: Getting a Puffer for the first time - Advice Needed

Postby bertie 83 on Tue Jul 03, 2012 6:46 pm

Introduce it to your tank at the salinity the store has them at, probably f/w. then raise sg by no more than 0.002 per week until you are at 1.003-1005
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Location: brighton , england
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My Puffers: lineatus R.I.P, South American puffer.
Non puffer
Danios, Tetras, Redtail Rasporas,
Harlequins, CAE's, Yoyo
Loaches, Clown loaches ,Eels, various shrimp,
Location (country): Brighton, England

Re: Getting a Puffer for the first time - Advice Needed

Postby DGabbs on Tue Jul 03, 2012 6:49 pm

Ya don't trust that aquarium user guide BS. "Never trust anyone who has something to sell". There is tons of great info on tank cycling online and on this forum.
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Re: Getting a Puffer for the first time - Advice Needed

Postby Lukedt95 on Tue Jul 03, 2012 6:51 pm

Just to confirm, you can do a Cycle without having fish in the tank right? I'm not really in a financial position currently to go out and buy fish to put in the tank purely for cycling.

Also, should my filter be ON when Cycling my tank?
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Lukedt95
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My Puffers: 1 Female Red Eyed Red Tailed Puffer
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Re: Getting a Puffer for the first time - Advice Needed

Postby DGabbs on Tue Jul 03, 2012 7:00 pm

Ya, fish-less cycles are most recommended now. You can use the shrimp technique (probably the hardest to mess up), but it starts to smell and will require lots of water changing. Basically you just drop a couple cocktail shrimp in the tank and monitor your ammonia, nitrite and nitrate with the test kit. The shrimp supply the bacteria and ammonia. Never overlook a proper cycle, it is very important to the short and long term health of your fish. I have been cycling tanks for 12 years, and some times it takes a week and some times it take three weeks. Brackish seems to take a bit longer (I'm currently cycling a brackish tank and its taking a long time), so your probably best to cycle the tank fresh water and slowly (less than 1.002 SG per week) raise the SG to 1.005-1.007. I wouldn't hurt to buy some of that bio bacteria supplement at a pet store. Gives you a kick start with bacteria. SOme will disagree with me here, but i have had lots of luck with bio supplement and it seems to speed up the cycle.

Filter needs to be on as that is where most of your beneficial bacteria will colonize. They need disolved oxygen and a tank with no current = low oxygen.
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