How Much Does a Puffer Fish Cost?
A puffer fish, also known as blow fish, is believed to be the second most poisonous vertebrates in the world next to the golden poison frog. The puffer fish developed the ability to inflate many times it size using water and air in order to avert predators since they are typically slow moving fish. When the puffer fish is inflated, there are many spines surrounding it, making it inedible for other fish. The puffer fish contains tetrodoxin that is 1,200 times more fatal than cyanide. In fact, a single puffer fish contains enough poison to kill thirty human beings and, unfortunately, there has been no known antidote for it yet.
Despite this fatal fact, however, many people still seem to be enchanted with this species. In Japan, the meat of a puffer, called fugu, is an expensive delicacy. Other people also find the fish lovable enough to be taken as a pet.
How much does it cost?
- Since there are so many different species, the costs of a puffer fish will range anywhere from as little as $2 to as much as $65. Most species, however, will be less than $35. The larger the species is, the more it is going to cost. Anything over four inches is usually considered to be large.
- LifeAquaria.com, for example, has a large selection of puffer fish that range from as little as $25 to as much as $65. The narrow-lined puffer retails for $24.99 while the leopard puffer retails for $37.
- At the Aquariumfish.net, for instance, the prices of puffer fish are as follows:
- Freshwater Dwarf Puffers — $2.55
- Green Spotted Puffer Fish — $5.50
- Figure Eight Puffer Fish — $9.75
- True Red Eye Puffer Fish — $9.85
- Twin Spotted Puffer — $12.50
- Arrowhead Puffer — $65.88
What is going to be included?
- Puffer fish are not a community fish. They have the tendency to eat other species and are therefore better kept in a separate aquarium.
- The average size of the puffer fish ranges from 1.5 to 7 inches.
- Common species include the dog face puffer, fahaka, porcupine, saddle, spiny box, spotted, leopard and more.
- Keep a close eye on the temperature and pH level of your aquarium, ensuring that your puffer has enough places to hide and sand to search through.
- Feed your pet with a combination of live and frozen feed like earthworms, blood worms, squid, crab, and mussels in their shells.
What are the extra costs?
- A 20 to 100-gallon aquarium is recommended for a puffer fish. Most aquariums will start at $50 and go up from there, depending on the type of aquarium and set up you wish to purchase. Salt water tanks are a must for puffer fish are much more expensive than fresh water tanks.
- Accessories such as an aquarium lighting system, sand substrate or some gravel, rocks and plants, a heater, filter, water conditioner, probe thermometer, hydrometer, and pH test kit will all be needed for your tank.
- Salt water will need to be replaced partially every month at a minimum. Two buckets can cost less than $200 for the year. A useful bacteria solution, ammonia, nitrate and nitrite water testing kit is recommended to ensure that the water is healthy enough for the fish.
- Like any other animal, fish food, such as the food mentioned above, will be needed daily.
Factors that influence the price:
- The prices of puffer fish vary according to the species, size, supplier or vendor and geographical location of the vendor.
- The price will also be affected by the tank setup that you choose. The more elaborate the tank, the more expensive it will be.
Tips to know:
- Depending on the species, some puffer fish may thrive in freshwater, in brackish water, or in both types of habitat.
- Puffer fish have the ability to gulp down huge amount of water, bloating themselves up to appear large and round. This characteristic seems to warn humans and predators not to get nearer or catch them because of the poison it brings.
- Puffer fish are clumsy swimmers.
- A spotted puffer fish is not a beginner’s pet. This quirky fish tends to eat other fish, nip at their fins, or starve itself because it is not quick enough to compete with other fish for food.
- Even though eating puffer fish can be deadly, it is still a popular food in some places. However, some breeders in Japan have recently bred a red puffer fish that is poison-free.
How can I save money?
- Shop around for better priced puffer fish. Make sure to choose the healthy one so as to avoid spending extra for its treatment. If you are going to purchase one online, make sure that your research the reputation of the retailer before proceeding.
- If you are a beginner, start with a cheaper species and work your way up to the puffer.
- Look for used salt water tank set ups. You will most likely be able to find one online at sites such as Craig’s List and Ebay.