Fish and Aquariums

Pea Puffers: Everything You Need To Know

Pea puffers are small carnivorous freshwater fish that can change color, have an intelligent personality, and require specialized care. They are a popular species among aquarium enthusiasts but can be aggressive and territorial towards their own kind.

In this article, we’ll discuss everything you need to know about pea puffers and how to keep them healthy and happy. Read on for more information!


What is Pea Puffer?

Pea Puffers, also known as Dwarf Puffers or Indian Dwarf Puffers, is a type of freshwater aquarium fish that has gained quite a bit of popularity in recent years. With their small size, vibrant colors, and unique personalities, it’s easy to see why they have become a favorite amongst both beginner and experienced fish owners alike.

Pea Puffers are an active fish species that are known for their feisty personalities, often exhibiting playful behaviors and even sparring with their tank mates. Their diet consists primarily of snails, making them a great addition to any tank plagued with unwanted snail infestations.

What is Pea Puffer


Housing Requirements for Pea Puffers

Pea Puffers (Carinotetraodon travancoricus) are a popular species of freshwater dwarf puffer fish that are native to South Asia, particularly in the Indian state of Kerala. These tiny puffers are highly sought after by aquarium enthusiasts due to their unique and attractive appearance, as well as their curious and playful personalities.


Tank Size and Setup

Pea Puffers are very small fish, typically growing to only 1-2 inches (2.5-5 cm) in length. Despite their small size, they are very active and require ample swimming space. A minimum tank size of 10 gallons (38 liters) is recommended for a single Pea Puffer.

However, it is important to keep in mind that these fish are highly territorial, and multiple Pea Puffers should not be kept together in the same tank unless the tank is extremely large and provides plenty of hiding places and territories for each fish.

Pea Puffers are freshwater fish and require a well-filtered aquarium with a gentle water flow. A heater is also necessary to maintain a stable water temperature between 76-82°F (24-28°C).

In addition, Pea Puffers need plenty of hiding places and territories in their tank. Live plants, rocks, and driftwood provide great hiding spots for these fish, while also adding to the aesthetic of the tank. Avoid using decorations with sharp edges or small holes, as these can cause injury to the Puffer.

Tank Size and Setup


Water Quality Parameters

Pea Puffers are sensitive to changes in water quality and any fluctuations in temperature, pH, or other parameters can be harmful to their health. It is important to maintain stable water quality in the aquarium.

The ideal water parameters for Pea Puffers are as follows:

  • pH: 7.0-8.0
  • GH: 6-10
  • KH: 4-8

Temperature: 76-82°F (24-28°C)

Regular water changes of 20-30% every week are essential to keep the water quality at its best. It is recommended to use a good-quality water conditioner to remove any harmful toxins from the tap water before adding it to the tank.

Water Quality Parameters



Pea Puffers are carnivores and require a diet of live or frozen foods, such as bloodworms, brine shrimp, daphnia, and small snails. They have very small beaks, so it is important to offer small, bite-sized pieces of food.

Overfeeding can lead to health problems, so it is important to feed these fish only once or twice a day, in small amounts that can be consumed within a few minutes.



Feeding a Pea Puffer

Pea puffers are carnivorous fish, meaning they require a diet that is rich in protein. The best food options for pea puffers are live or frozen foods, such as brine shrimp, bloodworms, and daphnia. These foods should be a staple in their diet, and you may want to feed them twice daily.

It’s crucial to ensure that these foods are of high quality and appropriate size for your puffer. In addition to live and frozen foods, you can also offer peas, which are a popular and affordable option. However, note that while peas can be beneficial for their digestion, they should not be the primary diet since they do not provide sufficient protein.

One popular option is feeding snails that live in the aquarium with puffer fish. Pea puffers love to hunt snails and eat them as a source of food. This method is also useful in controlling the snail population in your aquarium. It is essential to monitor your pea puffer’s eating habits closely.

If you notice they are not eating as much, it could indicate an underlying health issue or incorrect feeding method, such as offering the wrong size of food. If you suspect anything, monitor them closely or even consult a vet for advice.

Feeding a Pea Puffer


Breeding and Reproduction of Pea Puffers

Pea puffers, also known as dwarf puffers, are fascinating and entertaining species of fish to keep in an aquarium. Here are some tips and tricks for breeding pea puffers:

Breeding and Reproduction of Pea Puffers

Breeding and Reproduction of Pea Puffers

  • Tank setup: The first step in breeding pea puffers is setting up the proper tank environment. The tank should be heavily planted with live plants, have plenty of hiding places, and be free of other fish species.
  • Water conditions: Pea puffers prefer slightly acidic water with a pH range of 6.5 to 7.0. The water should be soft to moderately hard, with a temperature range of 75-80°F. A good filtration system is recommended to keep the tank clean.
  • Feeding: Pea puffers are carnivorous and should be fed a diet of live or frozen food, such as snails, shrimp, and bloodworms. A varied and nutritious diet is important for their health and breeding success.
  • Pairing: Pea puffers are not easy to sex with, but during breeding, males will develop a dark line along their belly, while females will have a more rounded belly. Pairing should be done carefully as pea puffers can be aggressive towards each other.
  • Breeding behavior: Pea puffers breed by depositing eggs on plants or other surfaces. The male will perform a courtship dance to entice the female to lay her eggs. Once the eggs are laid, the male will fertilize them. After breeding, it is best to remove the adult pea puffers.
  • Raising fry: Pea puffer fry hatch in about 4-5 days and should be fed small live or frozen foods, such as baby brine shrimp or crushed snails. They can be kept in a separate tank until they are large enough to be introduced to the main tank.

Breeding and reproduction of pea puffers can be a challenging but rewarding experience for any aquarist.


Common Diseases in Pea Puffers

Like many aquarium fish, pea puffers are susceptible to various diseases and illnesses if their environment is not properly maintained. Here are some common diseases that can affect these small but feisty freshwater fish:

Ich: Ich is a common parasitic disease that can easily be spread between fish and is caused by stress or poor water quality. Symptoms of ich include white spots on the skin, fins, gills, and eyes. It can be treated with a saltwater dip or a commercial medication specifically designed to treat parasites in aquariums.

Fungal Infections: Fungal infections can occur due to poor water quality, stress, or a weakened immune system. Symptoms of fungal infections include white patches on the body, cloudy eyes, and loss of appetite. These infections can be treated with a variety of antifungal medications available at pet stores.

Bacterial Infections: Bacterial infections are often caused by poor water quality and can be identified by a cottony or slimy growth on the skin, fins, and gills. These infections can be treated with antibiotics specifically designed for aquarium use.

Pea puffers are small, active fish that make great additions to any freshwater aquarium. They have vibrant colors and unique personalities, but they also require specialized care in order to remain healthy and happy.

Common Diseases in Pea Puffers


Tips for Keeping Healthy Pea Puffers

Pea puffers are small, freshwater fish that require specific care to ensure they stay healthy. Here are some tips for keeping healthy pea puffers:

Tips for Keeping Healthy Pea Puffers

  • Tank setup: Pea puffers, also known as dwarf puffers, require a tank that is at least 10 gallons in size with plenty of plants and hiding spots. They prefer a heavily planted environment with sand or fine substrate. Make sure to provide good filtration and regular water changes to maintain water quality.
  • Feeding and diet: Pea puffers are carnivorous and require a meat-based diet. They love small live or frozen foods such as snails, brine shrimp, and bloodworms. It is important to provide them with high-quality food and take care not to overfeed.
  • Tank mates: Pea puffers are not community fish and prefer to be kept alone or with their own kind. They can be aggressive towards other fish and may try to nip fins or attack and kill smaller fish. If you plan to keep them with other fish, choose peaceful species that are similar in size.
  • Water parameters: Pea puffers are sensitive to changes in water parameters and require stable water conditions. They prefer slightly acidic water with a pH between 7.0-7.5 and a temperature range of 75-80°F. Make sure to test water parameters regularly and adjust as needed.
  • Health issues: Pea puffers are prone to several health issues, including swim bladder problems, parasitic infections, and bacterial infections. Keep an eye out for any signs of illness such as lethargy, loss of appetite, or abnormal behavior. If you notice any issues, seek the advice of a qualified veterinarian.

By following these tips, you can help to ensure that your pea puffers stay healthy and thrive in their environment.


In Conclusion

Pea puffers are small, vibrant freshwater fish that require specialized care and attention. They are active and intelligent fish with unique personalities, but they can also be territorial and aggressive toward other tank mates.

It is important to provide them with a well-maintained aquarium with plenty of hiding places, live plants, and the proper water parameters. It is also essential to feed them a nutritious diet of high-quality live or frozen foods.

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