29 Gallon Tank Fresh water pufferfish suited for 29 gallon tank

TheAnglerAquarist

I know pea puffers and Amazon puffers, they are awesome but I was wondering if there were some others in the 3-4 inch range for a 29 gallon? I am obsessed with puffers!
 

jmaldo

In process of setting up a 20 long puffer build. Looking for info...
Watching!
 

TheAnglerAquarist

In process of setting up a 20 long puffer build. Looking for info...
Watching!
I really like Amazons and peas but the peas if like to have in a smaller tank and get to know the little guy
 

TheAnglerAquarist

In process of setting up a 20 long puffer build. Looking for info...
Watching!
Hey jmaldo i have been researching and I found one! The red eye puffer or the red tail. Same thing, different names. I have heard they are double the size of pea puffers and are colorful
 

FishDin

I've never kept puffers, but how about the Indian Dwarf Pea Puffer. They only grow to 1" Only need a 10g tank

Red Tail Red Eye Dwarf puffer: 1-2" 20g

Golden Puffer: 4-4.5" 20 gal.

These are based on research, not my experience.

Those Dwarf Pea Puffers are pretty darn cute!
 

TheAnglerAquarist

I've never kept puffers, but how about the Indian Dwarf Pea Puffer. They only grow to 1" Only need a 10g tank

Red Tail Red Eye Dwarf puffer: 1-2" 20g

Golden Puffer: 4-4.5" 20 gal.

These are based on research, not my experience.

Those Dwarf Pea Puffers are pretty darn cute!
Wasn’t aware of the golden! Thanks for the info!
I really like the avocado puffer, and it’s shape is a bit different than other puffers
 

Zach72202

Well freshwater puffers in a small tank is a hard one. The first obstacle is choosing a specimen you would enjoy, and the second is choosing one that fits the tank size.

Most freshwater puffers require specific environments. I will debunk a few of them you have seen, but also give some suggestions. Most of your options consist of your very small puffs and ambush predators.

Two I would not suggest are the Avocado Puffer, also known as the Golden Puffer (Auriglobus modestus), and also the Amazon Puffers. Reason being is that Amazon Puffers (Colomesus asellus) are very social and like to be in groups, much like pea puffers, but Amazon Puffers have extremely fast growing teeth. They are a great second puffer, but I suggest having them in a group of at least 6, any less they get aggressive against each other, or a solo specimen will get nervous and upset. Avocado Puffers grow to be about 4.5 inches, which yes it will fit, and it can live there, but the minimum size I would say is a 40B tank. They are very active swimmers and a 29g could do it for a while, but it isn't ideal.

What I would suggest though is these few species:
Your standard small puffers:
Pea Puffers (Should be in a group!)
Red Eye/Red Tail Puffers (Two different species, but will both work) Also, can be in groups

Your Ambush Predators: I suggest solo specimen here
Hairy Puffer - Pao baylei
Arrowhead Puffer - Pao suvatti
Potato Puffer - Tetraodon Murius

I will say that there are more species that will work, but these should be the 'easiest' to find. The only one you might be able to pull of tankmates is with pea puffers, all the others will be vicious with those not their species.

The small puffers will be active and a 29 will provide ample space, where the ambush predators will be very sedentary and burrow a lot in sand, but will be very aggressive feeders to your delight!

Note: These are all freshwater, if you'd like to venture to salt or backish, options open up. If you are interested in some of the more oddball puffers, shoot me a pm. I own a lot of puffers so I have some experience.

Hope it goes well!
 

TheAnglerAquarist

Well freshwater puffers in a small tank is a hard one. The first obstacle is choosing a specimen you would enjoy, and the second is choosing one that fits the tank size.

Most freshwater puffers require specific environments. I will debunk a few of them you have seen, but also give some suggestions. Most of your options consist of your very small puffs and ambush predators.

Two I would not suggest are the Avocado Puffer, also known as the Golden Puffer (Auriglobus modestus), and also the Amazon Puffers. Reason being is that Amazon Puffers (Colomesus asellus) are very social and like to be in groups, much like pea puffers, but Amazon Puffers have extremely fast growing teeth. They are a great second puffer, but I suggest having them in a group of at least 6, any less they get aggressive against each other, or a solo specimen will get nervous and upset. Avocado Puffers grow to be about 4.5 inches, which yes it will fit, and it can live there, but the minimum size I would say is a 40B tank. They are very active swimmers and a 29g could do it for a while, but it isn't ideal.

What I would suggest though is these few species:
Your standard small puffers:
Pea Puffers (Should be in a group!)
Red Eye/Red Tail Puffers (Two different species, but will both work) Also, can be in groups

Your Ambush Predators: I suggest solo specimen here
Hairy Puffer - Pao baylei
Arrowhead Puffer - Pao suvatti
Potato Puffer - Tetraodon Murius

I will say that there are more species that will work, but these should be the 'easiest' to find. The only one you might be able to pull of tankmates is with pea puffers, all the others will be vicious with those not their species.

The small puffers will be active and a 29 will provide ample space, where the ambush predators will be very sedentary and burrow a lot in sand, but will be very aggressive feeders to your delight!

Note: These are all freshwater, if you'd like to venture to salt or backish, options open up. If you are interested in some of the more oddball puffers, shoot me a pm. I own a lot of puffers so I have some experience.

Hope it goes well!
Thanks! I was really liking the avocado puffer and I researched all day, oof
Thanks! I was really liking the avocado puffer and I researched all day, oof
I think I want one more interactive and plain active so I don’t think I want an ambush but I do eventually, I already have sand

I really like the red eyes! I wish they were an inch bigger though. Not a big deal, but they are so rare! I already have a snail jar and there are many clutches waiting to hatch later this month, so they would like that. Also I have frozen bloodworms and frozen bbs
 

Zach72202

I have seen quite a few videos of the potato puffer and you can get them in like an orange color, which looks really cool. I kinda want one, but I have too many puffs already. What I have seen is that they are really interactive, but I have never owned one.

You could also look into a Spotted Congo Puffer - Tetraodon schoutedeni. I have 3 of them and they are pretty great. The personality is like a little Mbu honestly. Compared to a Mbu they are like little snotty 3 year olds, its quite hilarious. They can be pretty costly though, $200~ each.

If you could find it - Leiodon cutcutia - The Ocellated Puffer, is another smaller (2.5-3 inch individual), that has quite an attitude, but a little bigger and would do great in that 29g setting. Also a solo specimen. Hard to find honestly. You will probably have to find a way to get a hold of a trans-shipper that deals with Thailand a lot. Whether it be through a store or direct access, it won't be easy to find this guy.
 

TheAnglerAquarist

I have seen quite a few videos of the potato puffer and you can get them in like an orange color, which looks really cool. I kinda want one, but I have too many puffs already. What I have seen is that they are really interactive, but I have never owned one.

You could also look into a Spotted Congo Puffer - Tetraodon schoutedeni. I have 3 of them and they are pretty great. The personality is like a little Mbu honestly. Compared to a Mbu they are like little snotty 3 year olds, its quite hilarious. They can be pretty costly though, $200~ each.

If you could find it - Leiodon cutcutia - The Ocellated Puffer, is another smaller (2.5-3 inch individual), that has quite an attitude, but a little bigger and would do great in that 29g setting. Also a solo specimen. Hard to find honestly. You will probably have to find a way to get a hold of a trans-shipper that deals with Thailand a lot. Whether it be through a store or direct access, it won't be easy to find this guy.
Wow thanks! But 200 bucks… I have the budget to spend 30-50 bucks. I really like the sound of the ocellated puffer! It’s probably expensive too, though
Are the Leiodon cutcutia the same as tetraodon cutcutia?
 

Zach72202

Wow thanks! But 200 bucks… I have the budget to spend 30-50 bucks. I really like the sound of the ocellated puffer! It’s probably expensive too, though

Are the Leiodon cutcutia the same as tetraodon cutcutia?
Informally if you label any puffer under the genus 'Tetraodon' people understand what you are referring to as that only applies to puffers. It means literally "Four Teeth" as puffers have. The 'new' genuses of puffers groups generally lump puffers into where they are from, but for a long time all puffers were under 'Tetraodon', which is still the family name of 'Tetraodontidae'.

A long winded answer of, yes they are the same, kinda. Its the old scientific name of the fish.
 

TheAnglerAquarist

Informally if you label any puffer under the genus 'Tetraodon' people understand what you are referring to as that only applies to puffers. It means literally "Four Teeth" as puffers have. The 'new' genuses of puffers groups generally lump puffers into where they are from, but for a long time all puffers were under 'Tetraodon', which is still the family name of 'Tetraodontidae'.

A long winded answer of, yes they are the same, kinda. Its the old scientific name of the fish.
Thank you so much! You have been a massive help and I will have more questions
Thank you so much! You have been a massive help and I will have more questions
It is probably between these two at this point! I like how personable the csp’s are but they are so expensive and there isn’t a lot known about the ocellated puffer
Also what about the pao abei? They look awesome! And they are 4 inches
 

jmaldo

:) Zach72202
Thanks for sharing your knowledge / info.
Been following this thread, looking for a Puffer/s for a Planted 20 Long.
Do's/Don'ts
PM sent so as not to hijack this thread.
 

jmaldo

Zach72202
Thanks again for responding to the PM. Still researching, getting tank ready. Now to find some. Just did a search, appears hard to come by. I'll need to contact the owner of the LFS. Good Guy, been selling him cichlids for years.
 

TheAnglerAquarist

Thank you so much! You have been a massive help and I will have more questions

It is probably between these two at this point! I like how personable the csp’s are but they are so expensive and there isn’t a lot known about the ocellated puffer

Also what about the pao abei? They look awesome! And they are 4 inches
Zach72202
Or any other 3-4 inch freshwater puffers?
 

Zach72202

I would say you could do most of your Pao genus puffers in a 29g tank for quite a while, as long as they stay under that 4.5" mark. They might look a little out of place once they get full size, but it would fit. I would say if you could eventually upgrade to a 40B it would be beneficial.

Your biggest problem will probably be finding a specimen.
 

TheAnglerAquarist

I would say you could do most of your Pao genus puffers in a 29g tank for quite a while, as long as they stay under that 4.5" mark. They might look a little out of place once they get full size, but it would fit. I would say if you could eventually upgrade to a 40B it would be beneficial.

Your biggest problem will probably be finding a specimen.
And that’s why I need your help!
 

Zach72202

And that’s why I need your help!
Honestly it will probably take months to find the fish, and most likely will have to order it. Your best bet is to search the internet every week relentlessly or go to a shop and have them on the lookout for it for you. I wouldn't hold your breath until later this year. Most stuff comes available come wintertime as people are spending more time in the great indoors.
 

TheAnglerAquarist

Honestly it will probably take months to find the fish, and most likely will have to order it. Your best bet is to search the internet every week relentlessly or go to a shop and have them on the lookout for it for you. I wouldn't hold your breath until later this year. Most stuff comes available come wintertime as people are spending more time in the great indoors.
Well I am just looking for a puffer, I’m not getting it for a while as my 29g is a community tank for now
 

TheAnglerAquarist

Okay so it is between the avocado puffer, the abei puffer and the ocellated puffer.
 

jmaldo

Interesting
Still researching and undecided on which I'll get. Not finding many options for sale online. Will be visiting my LFS owner, see what he can get from his suppliers.

Good Luck!
 

TheAnglerAquarist

Interesting
Still researching and undecided on which I'll get. Not finding many options for sale online. Will be visiting my LFS owner, see what he can get from his suppliers.

Good Luck!
I think the red eye would suit your tank perfectly! What are your favorites so far?
 

jmaldo

Hmm...
Since I am partial to blue coloring on fish, I have been searching for a Blue puffer. Sadly all I have found have been saltwater.
But so far these having caught my eye.
Target Puffer (Tetraodon leiurus)
Greenbottle Puffer (Auriglobus nefastus)
Dwarf Malabar Puffer (Carinotetraodon travancoricus)
Ocellated Puffer (Leiodon cutcutia)

Still looking...
 

TheAnglerAquarist

Hmm...
Since I am partial to blue coloring on fish, I have been searching for a Blue puffer. Sadly all I have found have been saltwater.
But so far these having caught my eye.
Target Puffer (Tetraodon leiurus)
Greenbottle Puffer (Auriglobus nefastus)
Dwarf Malabar Puffer (Carinotetraodon travancoricus)
Ocellated Puffer (Leiodon cutcutia)

Still looking...
I think 3 out of those 4 could work great. The target puffer, not so much… they can get to 6 inches which in my opinion is a bit too big for a 20 gallon long. Unless you plan on upgrading to a 40b or a 55 gallon. The other three would work well
 

jmaldo

During my research size of course is a factor. Some I have found grow quite large, but looking for something which will not exceed 4-5" when full grown. I do have a 33Long and a 55g once they get larger. Any idea on their normal growth rate?
 

TheAnglerAquarist

During my research size of course is a factor. Some I have found grow quite large, but looking for something which will not exceed 4-5" when full grown. I do have a 33Long and a 55g once they get larger. Any idea on their normal growth rate?
You could totally do any of those, bow that I know you have a 55 and 33 long. For growth rate… it probably depends on species, I know peas grow pretty slow. But that’s all I know
Also, I think I will eventually get the avocado! Unless I can find an abei puffer. (Need more info on them) They are so interactive, cute and pretty. I will upgrade to a 40b if necessary
 

TheAnglerAquarist

Now that I think about it I would be willing to spend the money on a spotted Congo! They have such personalities! Could you tell me more about the ones you have?
 

Zach72202

They are little goofballs. They aren't like super active and constantly swimming around super fast, but they are pretty active. In the mornings they will be sitting in some plants or on the sandbed not doing much, or maybe slowly swimming around the bottom looking for some Malaysian Trumpet Snails. They pace around the tank looking at things slowly and then come greet you. Very comparable to a green spotted puffer, personality wise. Curious, very interactive when feeding, not too aggressive, but have their moments. If you want to keep them with tankmates, mine currently live with leupoldi angelfish, guppies, aspidoras spilotus, brisltenose plecos, and sparkling gouramis. At one point I had pygmy cories in there and they killed a lot of them. You really gotta find what works with your puffer the hard way unfortunately.

A lot of people say they are like a mini-mbu, which I don't believe. The activity pattern is very similar, but Mbu's are much more interactive. Not to discourage you from getting a spotted congo, I think they are great. If you wanna know what I mean specifically, look at my profile picture, that is my puffer doing his usual thing lol.

The best way to describe spotted congos is that they aren't excellent in any way, but not bad in any way. They are just a very well rounded and good fish.

What do I mean?
Can have some tankmates, not all kinds
Doesn't need a large tank
Teeth don't grow super fast, so they don't need shelled diet 24/7
Pretty interactive, but not nose to the glass everytime you see them.
Not cheap, but worth the money

If you plan to have one puffer and you don't know what- this is it. I would say go for a 40B so you can do some tankmates, have a very successful planted tank, and is affordable and not too big.
 

TheAnglerAquarist

They are little goofballs. They aren't like super active and constantly swimming around super fast, but they are pretty active. In the mornings they will be sitting in some plants or on the sandbed not doing much, or maybe slowly swimming around the bottom looking for some Malaysian Trumpet Snails. They pace around the tank looking at things slowly and then come greet you. Very comparable to a green spotted puffer, personality wise. Curious, very interactive when feeding, not too aggressive, but have their moments. If you want to keep them with tankmates, mine currently live with leupoldi angelfish, guppies, aspidoras spilotus, brisltenose plecos, and sparkling gouramis. At one point I had pygmy cories in there and they killed a lot of them. You really gotta find what works with your puffer the hard way unfortunately.

A lot of people say they are like a mini-mbu, which I don't believe. The activity pattern is very similar, but Mbu's are much more interactive. Not to discourage you from getting a spotted congo, I think they are great. If you wanna know what I mean specifically, look at my profile picture, that is my puffer doing his usual thing lol.

The best way to describe spotted congos is that they aren't excellent in any way, but not bad in any way. They are just a very well rounded and good fish.

What do I mean?
Can have some tankmates, not all kinds
Doesn't need a large tank
Teeth don't grow super fast, so they don't need shelled diet 24/7
Pretty interactive, but not nose to the glass everytime you see them.
Not cheap, but worth the money

If you plan to have one puffer and you don't know what- this is it. I would say go for a 40B so you can do some tankmates, have a very successful planted tank, and is affordable and not too big.
You have been such a great help and I love it when mbus smush their face on the glass, so cute lol yeah I think this guy is great and it’s more interactive than ambush puffer. I love this, the avocado and the abei but I don’t know very much about the latter and the avocados teeth grow fast, almost like an Amazon puffer. Puffers are special fish
 

Zach72202

You have been such a great help and I love it when mbus smush their face on the glass, so cute lol yeah I think this guy is great and it’s more interactive than ambush puffer. I love this, the avocado and the abei but I don’t know very much about the latter and the avocados teeth grow fast, almost like an Amazon puffer. Puffers are special fish
That they are. I only recommend puffers to those who want a pet, not a fish. Treat it like a cat or dog with good care, and you will receive so much out of it. BTW you can get them on eBay for about $225 and free shipping. I got mine that way.
 

RogueFebreze

Late to the thread I know, but I do have some first hand experience. I've seen them named a couple times throughout the thread, the red eye red tail puffers. Their scientific name is Irrubesco, and that is what I call them. I currently have a group of four of them in a 29g tank. The males are in the 2-2.5 in range with one being light green and the other is mottled red. They both have red tails. The girls are smaller and different shades of mottled brown with speckled stomachs. They are beautiful fish and the 4 are easily distinguishable, even to non-fishkeepers. As for temperament, they are extremely peaceful and are able to live in a community with cherry barbs, kuhli loaches, pygmy corys, a hillstream loach, ghost shrimp, and wood catfish. IMO, they are really the perfect fish if you are looking for a fish with a lot of personality and natural curiosity while also wanting the community aspect in your tank.
 

TheAnglerAquarist

Late to the thread I know, but I do have some first hand experience. I've seen them named a couple times throughout the thread, the red eye red tail puffers. Their scientific name is Irrubesco, and that is what I call them. I currently have a group of four of them in a 29g tank. The males are in the 2-2.5 in range with one being light green and the other is mottled red. They both have red tails. The girls are smaller and different shades of mottled brown with speckled stomachs. They are beautiful fish and the 4 are easily distinguishable, even to non-fishkeepers. As for temperament, they are extremely peaceful and are able to live in a community with cherry barbs, kuhli loaches, pygmy corys, a hillstream loach, ghost shrimp, and wood catfish. IMO, they are really the perfect fish if you are looking for a fish with a lot of personality and natural curiosity while also wanting the community aspect in your tank.
Thank you! I really like the idea of a peaceful puffer (amazons teeth grow too fast) but I am considering this! Do you think 1 would work as a centerpiece? I have a betta but I am waiting for him to have a great, long life! He is awesome. I already have a bladder snail culture going!
 

RogueFebreze

I would actually recommend at least 2, as the Irrubescos do best in pairs of 1 male to 1 female. Also, you don’t have to stress too much about the snails; I’ve fed mine frozen brine shrimp and bloodworms since day 1 and it’s been great. Here is a picture of one of my males and 1 of my females for reference!
2D906862-0FC9-431B-B649-92694DD00F28.jpeg
D7177136-AC53-475F-AECA-EC7A70DDBE39.jpeg
 

TheAnglerAquarist

Wow! Yeah I’m not going to stress but might as well feed it to them for enrichment
 

jmaldo

Hey Guys,
At the LFS today,
they have "Puffers"
2 Male Congos approx. 1.5-2" @ $200 each
and
3 male Dragons approx. 2-3" @ $75 each
Also, they have a Potato Puffer, very unique but not for sale.

Which would you choose Pros/Cons?

There is more info in my thread.
 

TheAnglerAquarist

They are little goofballs. They aren't like super active and constantly swimming around super fast, but they are pretty active. In the mornings they will be sitting in some plants or on the sandbed not doing much, or maybe slowly swimming around the bottom looking for some Malaysian Trumpet Snails. They pace around the tank looking at things slowly and then come greet you. Very comparable to a green spotted puffer, personality wise. Curious, very interactive when feeding, not too aggressive, but have their moments. If you want to keep them with tankmates, mine currently live with leupoldi angelfish, guppies, aspidoras spilotus, brisltenose plecos, and sparkling gouramis. At one point I had pygmy cories in there and they killed a lot of them. You really gotta find what works with your puffer the hard way unfortunately.

A lot of people say they are like a mini-mbu, which I don't believe. The activity pattern is very similar, but Mbu's are much more interactive. Not to discourage you from getting a spotted congo, I think they are great. If you wanna know what I mean specifically, look at my profile picture, that is my puffer doing his usual thing lol.

The best way to describe spotted congos is that they aren't excellent in any way, but not bad in any way. They are just a very well rounded and good fish.

What do I mean?
Can have some tankmates, not all kinds
Doesn't need a large tank
Teeth don't grow super fast, so they don't need shelled diet 24/7
Pretty interactive, but not nose to the glass everytime you see them.
Not cheap, but worth the money

If you plan to have one puffer and you don't know what- this is it. I would say go for a 40B so you can do some tankmates, have a very successful planted tank, and is affordable and not too big.
So out of the freshwater puffers that can go in a 29 gallon, what would you say is the most interactive with humans?
 

Zach72202

So out of the freshwater puffers that can go in a 29 gallon, what would you say is the most interactive with humans?
Hard to say honestly. They are like cats, sometimes they love attention, sometimes they want minimal contact. My fahaka used to be super in the glass and right in your face, but now he likes to bury himself and sit in the sand barely looking at me. Its a toss up honestly.
 

TheAnglerAquarist

Hard to say honestly. They are like cats, sometimes they love attention, sometimes they want minimal contact. My fahaka used to be super in the glass and right in your face, but now he likes to bury himself and sit in the sand barely looking at me. Its a toss up honestly.
I have seen some personable pea puffers, but as you know I want something in the 4 inch range, so the spotted Congo seems to be the best option, right? For an all around awesome small puffer
 

TheAnglerAquarist

Late to the thread I know, but I do have some first hand experience. I've seen them named a couple times throughout the thread, the red eye red tail puffers. Their scientific name is Irrubesco, and that is what I call them. I currently have a group of four of them in a 29g tank. The males are in the 2-2.5 in range with one being light green and the other is mottled red. They both have red tails. The girls are smaller and different shades of mottled brown with speckled stomachs. They are beautiful fish and the 4 are easily distinguishable, even to non-fishkeepers. As for temperament, they are extremely peaceful and are able to live in a community with cherry barbs, kuhli loaches, pygmy corys, a hillstream loach, ghost shrimp, and wood catfish. IMO, they are really the perfect fish if you are looking for a fish with a lot of personality and natural curiosity while also wanting the community aspect in your tank.
I have really grown interested in these guys, and I would like to know, could I keep one or 2 in my tank? Would they be agressive in small numbers or alone?
 

RogueFebreze

I have really grown interested in these guys, and I would like to know, could I keep one or 2 in my tank? Would they be agressive in small numbers or alone?
Forgive me but you'll have to remind me as it's been a little bit, what size tank do you have and how have you decorated it?
 

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