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May 31, 2013

Good morrow, squire! Where is my sword and shield? I had my servants send it to your homestead last fortnight, and was totally ready to dub you into knighthood. What do you mean why am I dressed like a knight and speaking with an English accent? Didn’t you get the crow I sent you about searching for dragons? Alright, alright I guess I’ve been watching too much Game of Thornes. I’ll stop embarrassing you and put my “normal” clothes back on. Hey now, a cowboy is normal in my book. Alright already stop making fun and let’s get to work. Yes, I know that Thailand is the last place you’d think about searching for dragons, but I can tell you that there is a beast lurking in these waters. No, no, we’re not here to slay this aquatic monster. In fact, it’s not even a reptile…

I wouldn’t even say that Tetraodon palembangensis “Dragon Puffer” is even remotely close to resembling a fire breathing dragon, or any of the reptilian family for that matter. They may not have any scales, but the pattern on the body is beautiful. These predators can be found in small streams and ponds throughout Thailand, Laos, Malaysia, and Indonesia. The Dragon Puffer is a sluggish fish that typically doesn’t move around much, and can be housed in tanks around 40 gallons or so. They seem to prefer a diet of shellfish, and should be offered a diet of snails and unshelled shelled fish (crabs and mussels) in order to keep their beak nice and sharp. Because of their slow demeanor, juvenile fish only need to eat every other day, while adults can go about once a week for their feeding. The fish prefer warm water (75-82°) with a neutral pH (6.8-7.6).  

Tetraodon palembangensis

Now that we’ve had a little education, let’s get over to the water and hunt us some dragons. Huh? Oh right, the helmet. I suppose I really don’t need to keep wearing it. I was wondering why the locals were staring at me? How about you take the left side of the river, and I’ll take the right? Let’s meet up by that bridge ahead. So how did you do?

Tetraodon palembangensis

I see you seemed to have caught a few, but what else do you have in that bucket of yours?

That “arrow” shape on the forehead is a sure sign of Tetraodon suvattii “Arrowhead/Pig Nose Puffer”. These little guys must have swum up this calmer pool, as they are usually found in muddy substrates of the main river. This ambush predator likes to bury itself in the substrate and wait for smaller fish to approach. It quickly makes a disturbance in the water as it takes down its prey. The Arrowhead Puffer seems like a little cooler water (72-79°) than its cousin - which is probably why it’s found in the main river. These puffers are highly temperamental in aquariums. Their angry attitude has given the 6” fish a bad reputation among hobbyists, and is something that the beginner really should stray away from. An experienced keeper knows that this fish really needs to be kept alone, or in a species only tank. If this can be met you’ll be happily rewarded with behavior unlike most other fish.

Tetraodon suvattii

You made this collecting trip look easy. I’d say that it’s about time we took away that apprentice title, and give you a proper title. It just so happens I dragged the long sword with me. Hey, don’t run away yet! Where are you going!? Hey, come back!

Ok, ok, I’ll put the sword awayNo, really. I will!

Anthony Perry
Sales Manager