web analytics

Pea Puffer Fish (Carinotetraodon travancoricus): Complete Care Guides, Tank Mates, FAQs

Pea Puffer Fish (Carinotetraodon travancoricus): Complete Care Guides, Tank Mates, FAQs
<a href="https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Carinotetraodon_travancoricus_hi_res.jpg">Beta Mahatvaraj</a>, <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0">CC BY-SA 4.0</a>, via Wikimedia Commons

The Pea Puffer Fish, scientifically known as Carinotetraodon travancoricus, is a captivating creature that’s part of the Tetraodontidae family. This freshwater fish, also referred to as the Dwarf Pufferfish or Malabar Pufferfish, is a member of the Tetraodontiformes order and the Actinopterygii class. Its vibrant color palette ranges from yellow-green to dark green, with a lighter belly and dark spots or blotches adorning its body.

While the Pea Puffer Fish isn’t considered rare, it’s listed as Vulnerable by the IUCN due to habitat loss and degradation. It’s important to note that there are no popular variants of this species. However, other species in the same genus, such as Carinotetraodon lorteti and Carinotetraodon irrubesco, share similarities.

Native to the freshwater rivers of South India, particularly in Kerala and Karnataka, the Pea Puffer Fish is primarily a bottom dweller. However, it’s not uncommon to see them swimming at all levels of the water column. Their diet mainly consists of small crustaceans, worms, and other invertebrates. In captivity, they’re often fed snails to control their beak growth. Despite their small size, these fish are known for their curious and interactive behavior. However, they can be aggressive towards other fish, especially those of the same species.

In terms of statistics, the Pea Puffer Fish is one of the smallest species of pufferfish, reaching a maximum size of just 3.5 cm (1.4 in) in length. With proper care, they can live for up to 4 years in captivity.

There are several fascinating facts about the Pea Puffer Fish. For instance, unlike most pufferfish, they don’t have pelvic fins. Instead, they use their pectoral fins for navigation. Additionally, they’re one of the few species of fish that can blink or close their eyes.

The Pea Puffer Fish is not just interesting, but also full of surprises. Despite their small size, they’re known for their bold personalities. Often described as “pint-sized with a gallon-sized attitude”, they’re one of the few freshwater pufferfish species, as most pufferfish are found in marine or brackish environments.

The history of the Pea Puffer Fish dates back to 1878 when it was first described by the British ichthyologist Francis Day. The species is named after the Travancore region of India, where it was first discovered.

Pea Puffer Fish (Carinotetraodon travancoricus): Complete Care Guides, Tank Mates, FAQs
Beta Mahatvaraj, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Key Information

The Pea Puffer Fish, while a unique species in its own right, does not have any known variants. However, it shares its genus, Carinotetraodon, with several other species. Among these are Carinotetraodon lorteti and Carinotetraodon irrubesco, which exhibit similar traits and behaviors. Despite the lack of variants, the Pea Puffer’s distinctive characteristics and captivating personality make it a favorite among aquarists.

FamilyTetraodontidae
PriceVaries, usually around $5-$10 per fish
Common NamesPea Puffer, Dwarf Pufferfish, Malabar Pufferfish
VariantsNo known variants, but related species include Carinotetraodon lorteti and Carinotetraodon irrubesco
Ideal Tank SizeMinimum 5 gallons per fish
Water ParametersTemperature: 77-79°F; pH: 7.0-7.5; Hardness: 5-15 dGH
LifespanUp to 4 years in captivity
Full SizeUp to 1.4 inches (3.5 cm)
Natural EnvironmentFreshwater rivers in South India
BehaviorCurious and interactive, but can be aggressive towards other fish
Habitat PreferenceBottom dweller, but can swim at all levels
Aquarium DecorationDense vegetation, driftwood, and caves for hiding
Ideal Tank MatesNon-aggressive, similarly-sized fish
Fish to AvoidAggressive fish, large fish, slow-moving fish with long fins
Best Foods/DietSmall crustaceans, worms, snails, and other invertebrates
DiseaseSusceptible to common fish diseases, especially if water quality is poor
Sex-SwitchNo known sex-switching behavior
Gender DifferencesMales are generally more colorful and have a more rounded body shape
Care LevelIntermediate
Breeding LevelDifficult

Ideal Tank Mates

The Pea Puffer Fish, with its vibrant personality and unique characteristics, can be a delightful addition to a community aquarium. However, due to its somewhat aggressive nature, it’s crucial to choose the right tank mates. Ideal companions should be peaceful, similarly-sized, and fast enough to avoid the Pea Puffer’s occasional nips. Here are 17 ideal tank mates for the Pea Puffer Fish:

1. Neon Tetras

Neon Tetras are small, peaceful fish that can coexist well with Pea Puffers. Their fast swimming speed allows them to avoid any potential aggression.

2. Guppies

Guppies are known for their vibrant colors and peaceful nature. They are fast swimmers, which helps them evade the Pea Puffer’s occasional nips.

3. Mollies

Mollies are hardy fish that can adapt to various water conditions. Their peaceful nature makes them a good match for Pea Puffers.

4. Platies

Platies are small, peaceful fish that can coexist well with Pea Puffers. They are also hardy and easy to care for, making them ideal for beginner aquarists.

5. Swordtails

Swordtails are active swimmers and can easily avoid Pea Puffers. They are also peaceful and get along well with other tank mates.

6. Zebra Danios

Zebra Danios are fast swimmers and can easily avoid the Pea Puffer’s occasional nips. They are also hardy and can adapt to various water conditions.

7. Cherry Barbs

Cherry Barbs are peaceful fish that can coexist well with Pea Puffers. They are also hardy and can adapt to various water conditions.

8. Corydoras Catfish

Corydoras Catfish are bottom dwellers, which helps them avoid the Pea Puffer’s territory. They are also peaceful and get along well with other tank mates.

9. Otocinclus Catfish

Otocinclus Catfish are small, peaceful fish that can coexist well with Pea Puffers. They are also excellent algae eaters, helping to keep the tank clean.

10. Ghost Shrimp

Ghost Shrimp are small, peaceful invertebrates that can coexist well with Pea Puffers. They are also excellent scavengers, helping to keep the tank clean.

11. Amano Shrimp

Amano Shrimp are peaceful invertebrates that can coexist well with Pea Puffers. They are also excellent algae eaters, helping to keep the tank clean.

12. Nerite Snails

Nerite Snails are peaceful invertebrates that can coexist well with Pea Puffers. They are also excellent algae eaters, helping to keep the tank clean.

13. Mystery Snails

Mystery Snails are large, peaceful invertebrates that can coexist well with Pea Puffers. Their large size helps them avoid being eaten by the Pea Puffer.

14. Bristlenose Plecos

Bristlenose Plecos are peaceful fish that can coexist well with Pea Puffers. They are also excellent algae eaters, helping to keep the tank clean.

15. Harlequin Rasboras

Harlequin Rasboras are small, peaceful fish that can coexist well with Pea Puffers. They are also hardy and can adapt to various water conditions.

16. Ember Tetras

Ember Tetras are small, peaceful fish that can coexist well with Pea Puffers. They are also hardy and can adapt to various water conditions.

17. Endler’s Livebearers

Endler’s Livebearers are small, peaceful fish that can coexist well with Pea Puffers. They are also hardy and can adapt to various water conditions.

FAQs

Can Pea Puffer Fish Live Alone?

Yes, Pea Puffer Fish can live alone. In fact, due to their territorial nature, they often do well in a species-only tank.

Do Pea Puffer Fish Need Salt in Their Water?

No, Pea Puffer Fish do not require salt in their water. They are a freshwater species and thrive in freshwater conditions.

Are Pea Puffer Fish Poisonous?

Yes, like most pufferfish, Pea Puffers are poisonous. However, they are not dangerous to humans unless ingested.

Can Pea Puffer Fish Live with Betta Fish?

It’s generally not recommended to house Pea Puffers with Betta Fish. Both species can be territorial and aggressive, which could lead to conflicts.

How Often Should I Feed My Pea Puffer Fish?

Pea Puffer Fish should be fed once or twice a day. It’s important to provide a varied diet to ensure they receive all necessary nutrients.

Do Pea Puffer Fish Need a Heater?

Yes, Pea Puffer Fish require a heater in their tank. They thrive in temperatures between 77-79°F (25-26°C).

Can Pea Puffer Fish Eat Flakes?

While Pea Puffers can eat flakes, it’s better to provide a diet of live or frozen foods. They particularly enjoy small crustaceans, worms, and snails.

Do Pea Puffer Fish Recognize Their Owners?

While it’s hard to say for certain, many Pea Puffer owners report that their fish seem to recognize them and show excitement when they approach the tank.

Can Pea Puffer Fish Change Color?

Yes, Pea Puffer Fish can change their color based on their mood, health, or environmental conditions. They generally range from a yellow-green to a darker green color.

Do Pea Puffer Fish Have Teeth?

Yes, Pea Puffer Fish have a beak-like structure made up of two teeth. They use this to crack open the shells of their prey, like snails and crustaceans.

Can Pea Puffer Fish Live in Cold Water?

Pea Puffer Fish are tropical fish and prefer warmer water temperatures. They thrive in temperatures between 77-79°F (25-26°C). They are not suited to cold water environments.

Do Pea Puffer Fish Sleep?

Yes, like most fish, Pea Puffers do sleep. However, they don’t have eyelids, so it might not look like they’re sleeping. They generally rest during the night and are active during the day.

Can Pea Puffer Fish Live in a Bowl?

While Pea Puffers are small, they require more space than a bowl can provide. A minimum of 5 gallons per fish is recommended to ensure they have enough room to swim and explore.

How Can I Tell if My Pea Puffer Fish is Happy?

A happy Pea Puffer Fish will be active and curious, exploring its environment and showing interest in its surroundings. Good appetite and vibrant coloration are also signs of a healthy, happy Pea Puffer.

Do Pea Puffer Fish Make Noise?

No, Pea Puffer Fish do not make noise audible to the human ear. They are silent creatures.

Can Pea Puffer Fish Jump Out of the Tank?

While it’s not common, Pea Puffer Fish, like many other species of fish, can jump out of the tank if they’re stressed or if the water conditions are poor. It’s a good idea to have a lid on your aquarium to prevent this.

How useful was this post?

Click on a star to rate it!

Average rating 5 / 5. Vote count: 1

No votes so far! Be the first to rate this post.

Michelle

Michelle

Total posts created: 133
A long-time freshwater fish enthusiast with a passion for sharing knowledge about this fascinating hobby. Over the years, Michelle has dedicated countless hours to studying, learning, and experiencing firsthand the joys and challenges of fish-keeping.

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *