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So frustrated with LPS

Discussion in 'Tropical Fish Emergencies' started by LisaD0812, Nov 11, 2019.

  1. LisaD0812

    LisaD0812 New Member

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    Hi there!
    I have a 29 gallon tank currently stocked with Rubber Lip Pleco, Cherry barbs, and an Electric Blue Ram. I had a Bamboo Shrimp which I exchanged for a freshwater puffer for obvious reasons. After consulting with my LPS, they recommended the Green Spotted Puffer. As soon as I acclimated the GPS, my Electric Blue Ram became quite upset. They are currently sticking to separate sides of the tank, but I realize this is not sustainable. This all led me to further research and I've learned that the GPS is NOT in fact a true freshwater puffer. My plan is to keep the GPS for about a month until I can surrender him to a more responsible store. Do I have any hope of owning a freshwater puffer? I read the South American puffer is a "nice" puffer (pending my ram's behavior). Can anyone give some experienced input? If I upgrade my tank, is there any hope to keep a ram and a freshwater puffer? I'm quite attached to my ram. He's gorgeous. Thanks for your help!
     
  2. Jan Cavalieri

    Jan Cavalieri Fishaholic
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    I'm just puzzled what kind of a puffer you're looking for. One that doesn't need a saltwater environment when grown or one that is peaceful? One that is 3" at maturity or 2 feet at maturity? Just looking at most of the puffers they tend to be aggressive fish better off kept alone while your Ram is a peaceful fish that enjoys the company of other peaceful fish. But there are exceptions. Check azgardens.com and search on freshwater puffer. They list a number of them and they also have quite a bit of information about them. Many are only available at certain times of years but most likely you could have them notify you if one you want comes in stock - some run $200 or more, some are far less expensive. Some are aggressive only to each other but fine with other species. I'm sure you could find one you like and would get on well with your Ram. Shipping (overnight in Styrofoam containers and a hot or cold pack depending on the season are required and will make shipping run about $40 no matter how many fish you purchase.
     
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  3. LisaD0812

    LisaD0812 New Member

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    Ah, great question. I was looking for a true freshwater puffer - one that wouldn't require brackish into adulthood. The GSP requires brackish as it ages. Everything I read after bringing him home stated they would require brackish. My LPS said differently. I called a different pet store and they, too, were concerned that I had a GSP and never intended to go brackish. Thanks for the recommendation- I will look into it.
     
  4. essjay

    essjay Moderator
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    Never, ever take advice from a fish store.

    I would not keep a puffer of any type in a tank with other fish.
     
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  5. LisaD0812

    LisaD0812 New Member

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    So I'm learning... there's a pet store about 2 hours away that takes education seriously, so I'm giving them my GSP so he doesn't get placed precariously. I've been reading that the South American puffer CAN be kept as a community fish and ideal tank mates are rams and barbs. My electric blue ram is stellar and has an awesome personality. I'm seriously hoping this is true.
     
  6. PheonixKingZ

    PheonixKingZ Fish Herder
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    Then I suggest you go to the 2 hrs away. Even if it’s a long trip, you could learn a lot. I am blessed to have a very knowledgeable LFS about 15 minutes from my house. :)
     
  7. seangee

    seangee Member

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    Puffers are not community fish. These should be kept in a species only tank. You won't find a puffer that is a suitable tankmate for an EBR.
     
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  8. Jan Cavalieri

    Jan Cavalieri Fishaholic
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    Well I read some of the descriptions of all the puffers they stock (when they are in season) and I would say that for the most part I, too would never put a puffer in with ANY other species.

    AZgardens.com did list a couple that supposedly only fight with each other and not other species but I wouldn't trust that. When I was purchasing my first sets of fish I bought what I was told by the LFS owner was a Chocolate Gourami (I had decided that was the species I liked best at that time). Other than having big eyes (which no Gourami's do) it sort of looked like a Gourami - had a spot on each side just like a Gourami. Well I posted a picture on this forum and was told it was a Cichlid - I knew something was wrong when I bought two more chocolate Gourami's that only will grow to 2" while this beautiful fish was already 5". I keep her with my semi-aggressive Gourami's because she is rated "aggressive" while my Gourami's in that tank are rated "semi-aggressive" - well she's way tougher than they are but they are really bullying her to the point she spends a lot of time in her cave but what shocked me is how seriously aggressive my "semi-aggressive" Gourami's are to each other as well as to her - so I won't believe an aggressive fish will only attack those of it's own species. Mine obviously don't. I think if I had room and added another couple of Cichlid in that tank it would be an all out war - especially at feeding time.

    So if you want a community tank ONLY get fish that are compatible with each other - generally ALL should be peaceful fish. There is a chart at liveaquaria.com that shows which fish are compatible with which and it can be helpful but generally if you have something like a Ram - which is peaceful then all his tankmates should be peaceful as well.

    Just purchase a separate tank and put your Puffer in there. Seems like a waste of space and money but they don't get along with anything. Or, better yet - just get a different species - there are so many cool species of peaceful fish. I LOVE the Dojo Loach and nearly all of the Pleco's - they don't cost a fortune (usually - I have one I paid $130 for) and there are some truly unique species. The Dojo's will just keep you laughing all day - mine all sleep together in a curled up mess, they all take turns with the air bubbler - getting inside it and getting shot to the top of the water and then diving back in. So social and intelligent - far more fun than an angry beast. My pleco's are just really cool looking - something out of a Sci-Fi movie but not as entertaining since they generally like to hide a lot.

    Anyway I recommend you re-think your strategy here and be more realistic about what an aggressive fish can do or you won't have much left of your Ram. Get some rare, cool looking peaceful fish - there are many to choose from.
     
  9. Jan Cavalieri

    Jan Cavalieri Fishaholic
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    Oh and my LEAST favorite tank is the one housing my semi-aggressive fish - I particularly dislike the Gourami's (I do have to say I'm very fond of the cichlid) they DO NOTHING all day but chase each other around the tank trying to nip each other. Feeding time is a nightmare - I've learned to put pellets in the bottom of the tank in multiple locations and then hold on to wet pieces of tubeflex worms (they eat from my fingers with an occasional nip) - this tends to divide the groups up to 2 or 3 separate sets and lower the aggression. But if I'm in a hurry and just throw the food in all I hear and see is massive amounts of splashing and fighting. My 8" big bully was getting really thin because instead of eating he spent all his time trying to prevent the other fish from eating! This has helped a lot but is very time consuming. Also because of their sizes I have a 29 gallon tank (I really need a 55 gallon) and can only house 5 of these fish or I will have cloudy water. The info on the website never said that some would get to be 8" - mostly it was 2 1/2 to 5". NONE are under 5" so because the tank is so small I have to do 2 water changes a week.

    I much more enjoy my peaceful tanks that have various sizes of fish from 4" down to 1/2". I can have more fish - they all look beautiful together and there is NO fighting (with the exception of a couple of my Gourami's that chase each other but never nip or cause damage and never attack any other fish) . You can really see their individual personalities come out with peaceful fish.
     
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  10. Byron

    Byron Member

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    As has been said by previous members, no species of puffer is a community fish. The tank must be set up solely for the puffer species and contain only that species.
     
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