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An Aquarist's Journal: Raising a Fahaka Puffer


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           This journal will be about my journey raising a Fahaka puffer from a baby to a large healthy and happy adult.   My intent is to share my successes and failures with the goal that other will be able to learn from my experience.  My hope is that along the way this will be a place for me to gain knowledge from input and information shared with me as well.

About me:

I have had aquariums throughout most my life starting with black moor gold fish as a child, through various species of fish, ranging from other goldfish, various fresh water species, cichlids, and even red belly piranhas.  Over the last year I have started back in the hobby after about a 10 year break.   I began with a live planted 90 gallon community tank that is stocked with a variety of tropical fish, then added two 37 gallon tanks, one for fancy gold fish, the other for a breeding pair of Koi Angles, a 125 gallon with Peacock and Yellow Lab Cichlids, and four 10 gallon tanks for med treatments and various projects.  I realized quickly how much I enjoy managing a small fish room even more than a single tank.  There is always a project or something I can make better and I find this quite fulfilling. 


If you are new to Fahaka Puffers here is a bit of information about them:

What is a Fahaka Puffer?

  • The Fahaka Puffer (Tetraodon lineatus) is a fresh water puffer.  Other common names are Striped Puffer, Nile Puffer, Band Puffer, Lineatus puffer, and Globe Fish.  They are solitary creatures in the wild that only come together during the breeding season.  Fahakas have a somewhat stocky body that is green, tan, or brown in color with a verticle stripes running from head to caudal/tail fin.   As a hunter Fahakas have bright orange eyes that can turn forward facing, creating to keeper an almost emotive/expressive face like appearance. Because of their excellent vision, Fahakas are known to recognize their keepers often creating an experience of keeping an aquatic puppy. 

Where are Fahakas from?

  • Found natively from East to West Africa. They can be found specifically in the upper Nile, Chad, Senegal, Gambia, Geba, Volta, and Turkan basins(Thank you wikipedia). They inhabit large rivers and open water, as well as weed beds and vegetated areas.

What do Fahaka eat?

  •   A Fahakas is a carnivore. Categorically a mulluscivore eating primarily invertebrates ranging from snails, mussels, clams, to shrimp.  

How big do Fahaka Puffers get?

  • In their fist year, growing up to an inch every month, Fahakas put on size fast.  Therefore a proper sized tank is important to prevent stunting as well as providing a permanent healthy environment for an adult who can exceed 17 inches in length. Recommended tank size is generally 125 gallons or more.  Depth of tank is important to allow for the fish to be able to turn around comfortably.  


So where do we begin?  Micro Puff (a place holder name for my puffer) has arrived!  My plan is to add posts starting with unboxing, initial care, tank set up, feeding, and permanent tank set up and interactions.  Though I have read quite a bit to prepare me for this I am brand new to puffers and I am looking forward to growing in my knowledge and skill.  I hope others will come along with me on this journey of raising my own personal water dog.







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Journal Update:

Med Tank:

      This is Micro Puffs temporary tank while he gets treated.  I grabbed some novelty items to give him some quick sterile structures to explore and hide in.  I added a small bowl of sand from his big tank incase he wanted to burrow.  He's inspected it, but from what I have seen, he hasn't paid much interest.

Med Treatment:

Fresh water puffers are mostly wild caught and our prone to parasites.  They often arrive pretty rough looking.  Currently Micro Puff appears to be in pretty good shape, no sunken belly, or visable skin issues.  He is quite active during the day and is eating regularly.  After consulting the gurus here on the forum it was recommended to only run him through a dose of Paracleanse and then reassess. 

The day after medicating I noticed weird swirly hairy stuff on the inside of the glass, bonus gif for that.  I have no idea what it is, but I am hoping its related to the meds.


Next update: Feeding with a small video of Micro Puff taking his first crack (pun intended) at a snail.



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