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South American Puffer

Young South American Puffer Photo taken at Wharf Aquatics
© Sean Evans

Common name:South American Puffer, Asell's puffer, Brazilian puffer, Peruvian puffer
Scientific name:Colomesus asellus
Size:Up to 6" (15cm) reported, more often 4" (10cm) in aquaria.
Origin:Amazon basin: Brazil, Colombia and Peru.
Tank setup:A species tank, or a larger community tank with suitably robust companions. Provide some cover and open swimming space.
Compatibility:A fairly peaceful puffer, but still inclined to nip fins.
Temperature:24-28oC (75-82oF)
Water chemistry:Freshwater species, pH around neutral.
Feeding:Live and frozen meaty foods: bloodworm and brine shrimp, cockles and mussels, earthworms, snails.
Comments: This puffer is more tolerant of its own kind than many puffers, so more than one can be housed in a tank together. If they are kept with other fish, then their companions must be chosen with care, as despite its relatively peaceful nature, this puffer may still fin-nip, particularly at feeding time. It may fight over pieces of food with others of its own species, but other than this they seem fairly oblivious to each other.
These are very active puffers, that never seem to stop swimming, and have been likened to a wind-up bath toy! Snails and other hard-shelled foods are an essential part of the diet to help wear down the teeth, which grow constantly, and can otherwise become overgrown.

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