Indian Dwarf Pea Puffer
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You may find Indian Dwarf Pea Puffer (scientific name, Carinotetraodon travancoricus) small, unique oddball and quite inquisitive about the surroundings. Their appearances are highlighted by yellow with dark green to black iridescent patches on the flanks and dorsal surface. Male coloration is brighter and deeper than that of female. In addition, males have dark stripes down the center of their pale belly and iridescent "eye wrinkle" patterns which are not seen in females. However, on the other hand, females are more rounded, tend to be a bit larger than males.
Most Pea Puffers are sold as juveniles which are hard to sex (as these fish choose their sex when they mature). As such and due to their fairly aggressive and territorial behaviors, it is important for Pea Puffer keepers to know such appearance differences so as to maintain a proper living habitat for them. If you wish to keep male and female together, we suggest a ratio of one male for every two to three females. It works well in decreasing male’s aggression. Providing them ample space and decoration is also a recommended measure. By putting aquatic plants, rocks, and driftwood in your aquarium, you will create more distinct spaces for your Pea Puffers to avoid each other.
Pea Puffer is more of an intermediate level fish, so we generally don’t recommend them to the beginners. In addition to their living conditions, they also have special dietary requirements (see more details in the care guideline below) and don’t often get along with other community fish. Pea Puffers are relatively slow-moving fish so if you keep them with other slow-moving ones (e.g., bettas), your puffers will relentlessly attack their fins. This also means faster-moving fish may be better choices for Pea Puffer’s tank mates. Some you can consider are tetras, rasboras, barbs, danios, and rainbowfish.
Despite those facts, Pea Puffer is still a favourite fish and attracts most aquarists to its intelligence, helicopter-like maneuverability, independently moving eyes, and ability to inflate like a tiny water balloon. They are absolutely a great addition to your aquarium.
What You Can Expect From This Fish:
- Highly intelligent and able to inflate like a tiny water balloon
- Safe with any plants
- Unique oddball appearance
RECOMMENDED TANK PARAMETERS:
- Temperature: 72° - 82° F (22° - 28° C)
- pH: 6.0 - 7.0
- KH: 5 - 15 dKH
- Minimum tank size: 10 gallons (single specimen), 30+ gallons (small group)
- Diet: Carnivorous as they are, they would prefer crustaceans (thus, you should not keep them with dwarf shrimp) and snails. They will happily clear any small snails (including the “nuisance” bladder snails that inhabit most planted tanks) in your aquarium. Please note that they often ignore dry foods; however, frozen bloodworms and other meaty frozen foods are acceptable to them.
- Origin: Tank-bred, but indigenous to India
- Average adult size: 1 inch (2.5 cm)
- Average purchase size: 1/2 - 1 inch (1.3 - 2.5 cm)