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Mbu Puffer 7.5CM
Stunning 7.5CM Mbu Puffer
CAN REACH UPTO 24"+
BEST KEPT BETWEEN 24-26°C
MINIMUM TANK SIZE 2000LITRES+
Puffer fish are so called as they have the ability to inflate their elastic stomachs with water or air. This is usually a response to some kind of threat, although in the aquarium many specimens appear to inflate themselves for no apparent reason. The fish becomes 2 or 3 times its normal size, big enough to scare away many potential predators, or difficult to swallow.
Puffers also have several other interesting adaptations. They are one of the few fish that can actually blink or close their eyes, which only serves to add further charm to what is already a fish with bags of character. They also have beak-like mouthparts, which are formed by a fusing of 2 teeth from each jaw (hence Tetraodon). These are used to crush shelled invertebrates, the favourite food of most puffers.
Many parts of the body of puffers contain the deadly neurotoxin tetrodoxin. This is the same poison found in the notorious blue-ringed octopus. When ingested in sufficient quantities, it can cause paralysis and death. As yet, there is no known antitoxin and to humans it is over 1000 times deadlier than cyanide. Grotesquely, the victim usually remains conscious as he or she becomes paralysed. It’s a famous delicacy in Japan, but is prepared only by highly-trained chefs, and even then many people have died from eating it. This need not worry you, but if you need to get rid of your puffer, sell it on: getting the barbecue out is not recommended!
The giant puffer is also known as the giant green puffer, or simply as the mbu puffer. It is an enigmatic species, as not only is it one of the most aggressive puffers available, but it will also learn to interact with its owner, developing into a real pet. Each individual seems to have a unique personality, which is rare among fish. Its eyes appear to show real expression, and its ponderous movements are a joy to watch. It can also change colour, depending on its mood or surroundings. Some specimens will puff up when they want attention, and to see a fully-grown adult inflate to the size of several footballs is an amazing sight.
However due to it’s eventual size, it is only really suitable for public aquaria or those few hobbyists able to house it in a suitably sized tank. Sadly, there has been an influx of small, 4-6″ specimens imported over the last few years, and we dread to think what has happened to many of them. If you see this species for sale and are tempted to buy one, please leave it in the store unless you have the facilities and dedication to maintain what is a true aquarium giant.