The Green Spotted Puffer Fish: Care, Feeding and Tank Set Up

Photo credit: Bigstockphoto
Photo credit: Bigstockphoto

Owning an aquarium requires a lot of attention especially if you have exotic pet fish. If you are planning to keep a green spotted puffer fish then you need to know how you can take care of one as well as its tank set up. This way you can keep it alive, healthy and happy.

The green spotted puffer fish or the Tetraodon Nigroviridis requires brackish water and live foods. They not always live well with other species so it is important that you know how to take care of one. If you are a newbie in taking care of a green spotted puffer fish then you need to know the important things that you need to know to keep this kind of fish alive for many years. Understand that these small fish can grow into big and aggressive adult green spotted puffers. So a large tank may be needed for these fellas.


You might think that feeding live food to fish sounds barbaric but this is how it is in the wild. To feed your puffer fish, you may need frozen or live bloodworms, shrimp and other small invertebrates that you can feed your fish. Understand that they have teeth that grow continuously, so to prevent overgrowth of these teeth, you need to feed them with preys that have hard coverings on a regular basis. This will also prevent health problems for the fish in the future. Feeding them with prawns, crabs and snails can help supply the nutrition they need in their diet. Of course you need to find something that they can eat and not something that’s bigger than their eyeball. You can also choose to breed the snails that you feed your puffers but if you don’t have time to make sure to find a supplier that can provide you with food for your pet fish.

Tinkering the tank:

Setting up the fish tank for your fish is easy. With proper caution and careful setup, your puffer fish will surely enjoy its new habitat. A green spotted puffer fish initially requires at least 30 gallons of space. If you can provide them with the biggest tank you can find, the better. Although they may not really live well with other fishes, they don’t mind living with fishes like archerfish and scats. They also don’t live well with other species like them and they hate living with timid fishes. Add plenty of plants in your tank too as they like to hide every once in a while. They may also eat live plants so always go for something artificial if you don’t want to adding new plants every now and then.

These types of fish live in areas where salt water meets fresh water so you need to set up a tank with brackish water. With the help of a hygrometer, you can measure the gravity of the tank water. Most puffer fish prefer living in gravities of 1.005 but some pet stores keep the young ones in fresh-water. If in case you purchased ones that were reared in freshwater (if it’s in a pet store) you may need to place them in the same environment at first. Once they have gotten used to it, slowly increase the salinity of the tank. You can do this by adding marine salts.

Place the water temperature in your fish tank at about 75 to 82 degrees Fahrenheit. To test for the alkalinity, use an aquarium test kit to monitor the tank water’s ph. Since these fishes require more saline in the tank, a pH of 7.5 to 8.5 is considered normal for them. Make sure to use high quality filter for your tanks too, this will help the water clean. Don’t forget to change the water at least once a week to keep your puffers healthy.


The green spotted puffer fish are named according to their ability to puff or blowing up air in their body. However this is an extreme form of defense and you should not make them do it on purpose as this is bad for your fish. Avoid netting the puffer when you are planning to clean your tank, instead scoop them out like any normal fish. This way they don’t have to blow or puff into a balloon.

Puffers can stay alive for a long time. They can even grow up to ten years if taken cared of properly. So make sure that you are committed and willing enough to take care of one as your pet.