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Hello From Panama City, Florida

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Hello all,

Just wanted to introduce myself😀.  I have had freshwater aquariums on and off for as long as I can remember.  In the last 2 and a half years I have really spiraled down the rabbit hole and youtube has been such a blessing!

I am Looking forward to interacting and gaining some knowledge from other addicts (I mean fish lovers)😆 

I do have a very specific reason for joining and I am hoping for some help and guidance after conflicting information on the internet and my local fish store.  I am scared to trust what I read or have been told.  I have been watching allot of Corey's Podcast and he seems really knowledgable so after seeing this forum I thought I would join, follow along a bit and hopefully learn what I need to know to better care for my fin fellowed friends.  I am sure this is not the post for it but am looking forward to any and all assistance I can receive.


Lisa M. Carstens


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I have to say I'm a bit jealous of you being in Florida. At least from an aquarium perspective. Pretty much any cool looking freshwater aquarium fish that's native to the continental US is from Florida. Plus I've heard you can go out to the ditch and just scoop up amazing fish that escape farms during hurricanes.

Welcome but be warned this isn't like AA, this place only enables and feeds that addiction.

Yeah finding good information can be tricky. Lots of bad information it there, then there are just different schools of thought and different approaches/goals. Mix that all together and it gets confusing fast, especially starting out. My advice is to figure out what a person's "thing" is in the hobby and give they advice more weight when they talk about that thing but be more skeptical once they venture out of that. For example, I recently watched a video by a guy who mainly does aquascapes but he was doing a killifish unboxing. He clearly wasn't familiar with killis but really knew his plants.

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I currently have 4 tanks in my home

3 gallon Aqua Top bowfront (1 week old) -4 rescued guppies

20 Gallon Extra High (Cherry Barbs, Rasbora Tetras, 2 Powder Blue Gouramis, 2 Cory Cats, 1 Kuhli Loach. (approximately 2 years and counting. 

36 Gallon Bowfront 2 Clown Loach, 4 Jewel Cichlids, 4 Yellow Labs, Strawberry peacocks. you look at these fish and they produce babies so i try  not to make eye contact 😆 (2.5 years)

6 Gallon Cube Aqueon   (Less than 24 hours ) used media from another tank  to start ..... (I know I'm in trouble for this and already finding out may not end well) 2  Pea Puffers ( shipped together , was told by sales associate it was fine to buy the pair! and house them together and they even helped me pick the setup ..... they were doing great as tank mates and raising them together would be fine.  Associates seemed knowledgeable, I was told they are 2 females.)  I did a little research prior to spending an arm and a leg for the set up and trusted what other info and guidance they provided.  Now as I am really studying these cutie pies I am not 100% I have 2 Leopard pea puffers.  (mine to me look more like spotted green pea puffers). Granted I am VERY new to Puffers. never owned one because I am more of a community tank person.....  I thought owning a single fish in a tank was no fun.  Until YOUTUBE... They started to intrigue me and dang it one moment  I am in a store to buy a larger tank for the guppies and the next I am $250.00 in deep with a tank, light, filter, soil, plants, Spider wood, food, rocks, sand and two new puffers...

Once I got home and set everything up and really had some light on the fish, I have some concerns.  I AM NOT HAVING SECOND THOUGHTS but I want to make sure I give them the best care and when I started to do more research on the care of the fish, it is totally different than what I was told.   I called my local pet store for some guidance or further information but learned nothing new and now I feel confused more than anything and scared to make a decision on their health.  


My major concern is if they are correct and they are leopard puffers they are truly Freshwater and if my research is correct they should not have brackish water to maintain a healthy life.  BUT the salesman also told me when my puffers started to grow I would want to integrate and convert to brackish water for their health..  I never saw that anywhere in my research and some research even says leopard puffers are in fact FRESHWATER ONLY and should not ever have brackish water. ( I do mean brackish not just adding aquarium salt to tank,)  I don't think I misunderstood but it is totally possible and now I feel like i was given all the time in the world when I was making a purchase but now that I am home and need a little bit of guidance for my their health and well being, they are to busy to answer any questions. 


So I am looking at my new puffers and I swear to me they look like spotted greens but it is hard for me to tell the difference between the leopard and spotted even in photos.  Also my two look like they are sunken in around the back area just before their tails and a bit of fin and tail damage.  They came to me this way.

Sorry I went way down that rabbit hole on the puffers. 

Yes I am still learning and hope to get these guys healthy, I am in love already!


Please be gentle...




All Freshwater Fish








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By no means am I an expert. I’m not saying those aren’t pea puffers, but the coloration would certainly be different than any I’ve seen or kept.

Welcome to the forum as well!

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On 2/28/2023 at 4:56 PM, Schuyler said:

Plus I've heard you can go out to the ditch and just scoop up amazing fish that escape farms during hurricanes.

Be still my heart. 🤩
That sounds like heaven. 

Welcome friend!

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Thanks @Colu. @skottiesgerl nice set ups. I havent kept either species but they look more like the green spotted Dichotomyctere nigroviridis than the ceylon puffer Dichotomyctere fluviatilis to me.My guess is based on spots on the dorsal surface particularly between the eyes. 

I feed lots of snails and treat with the med trio for wild puffers.


@Zenzo has a great care video on the 2nd channel. 


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