Aquarium Fish

Map Puffer

posted: 05/15/12
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Map Puffer
Courtesy of Drs. Foster and Smith
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The Map Puffer, also known as the Scribbled Toadfish and Scribbled Arothron Puffer, has a very distinct and vivid appearance. The main color ranges from light tans to dark yellows and it has a network of black "scribbles" covering the body, forming an intricate pattern. It lacks pelvic fins, but has learned to use the pectoral fins to move about the aquarium.

It has the ability to inflate its body to almost twice its normal size when threatened or alarmed. While "puffed up," its spines are held straight out from the body to discourage others from trying to eat it. Parts of the flesh are poisonous if digested. Its teeth are actually a fused beak-like structure.

A 220 gallon or larger, fish-only aquarium with a good protein skimmer is suitable. It will generally live peacefully with other fish, even other Puffers. It will eat invertebrates found in a reef tank, as well as corals, and even aquarium apparatus. It becomes alarmed when in a net, therefore, use a container to transfer it.

The Map Puffer needs a varied diet of meaty foods including squid, krill, clams, and hard shelled shrimp to help wear down their ever growing teeth. It hunts at night, so it may only be seen during the nocturnal hours.

Fish Facts

Name: Map Puffer (Arothron mappa)

Family: Tetraodontidae

Range: Indo-Pacific

Size: Up to 26 inches

Diet: Carnivore

Tank Set-up: Marine: Coral or rock, plants

Reef Compatible: No

Tank Conditions: 72-78°F; sg 1.020-1.025; pH 8.1-8.4

Minimum Tank Capacity: 220 gallon

Light: High

Temperament: Semi-aggressive

Swimming Level: No specific level

Care Level: Moderate

Reproduction: Egg Scatterer

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