12 Interesting Facts About Puffer Fish
When we talk about sea creatures that can change shape or color, the list includes very few creatures. So we are sure that your list lacks one name: Puffer Fish. But this fish deserves its name in the list because it changes from small and cute to a deadly creature within seconds. This article will discuss more interesting and lesser-known puffer fish facts.
Basic Puffer Fish Facts
Puffer Fish, Swell fish, and Blowfish
Puffer Fish is classified into the kingdom of Animalia. The scientific name of this fish is
Tetraodontidae and it belongs to the family of Tetraodontidae.
The Latin name for this fish is Tetraodontidae.
The Puffer Fish have a bulbous head with a tapered and long body. In addition, some of the Puffer Fish have markings on their body, while others have unique colors that help them blend with their surroundings.
Types Of Freshwater Puffer Fish
There are many kinds of freshwater Puffer Fish. Some of them are Dwarf Puffer Fish, Eyespot Puffer Fish, Mbu Puffer Fish, and many others.
Full Grown Size And Weight:
If a Puffer Fish is fully grown, its weight can reach up to 30 pounds, and its size can reach up to sixty-five centimeters.
Habitat And Range
You can find Puffer Fish in subtropical ocean waters and tropical ocean waters.
Some of the categories can also live in freshwater.
Usually, the Puffer Fish feed on algae and invertebrates. However, some of the species can also eat shellfish.
If there is no other danger like loss of habitat, we can expect the lifespan of a normal Puffer Fish to be eight to ten years.
12 Interesting And Fun Puffer Fish Facts
Pufferfish have more than 100 species at present. It makes them unique as only some fish have so many species., the Puffer Fish are usually found in tropical areas with 18 species found just in the Maldives.
As the name suggests, Pufferfish gets puffed up using water to scare other animals. The skin on their stomach is highly stretchable, and when they puff up, it gets stretched several times its original size. So first, their body is lean, but when they get inflated, it becomes round.
This little creature is highly toxic; it contains a toxin named tetrodotoxin. This toxin is many times stronger in comparison to cyanide. When tetrodotoxin is released on the skin due to inflation, it can stop the nervous system from working in very little time as it is a neurotoxin.
These creatures are extremely toxic; hence, their name is among the list of most poisonous creatures in the world. For example, a single pufferfish has enough toxins to leave 30 human adults dead.
Also Read: Top 12 Most Dangerous Fish in the World
Thanks to their poisonous spikes, not every fish can eat a Puffer Fish. However, if a fish eats it, there are very low chances of survival. Only sharks are immune to the neurotoxin of Puffer Fish; especially Tiger Sharks are one of their main predators because they chew up everything in their way. Also, they are immune to harmful tetrodotoxin.
Also Read: Fun Shark Facts For Kids
The teeth of Pufferfish always keep growing; therefore, these fish are required to snack upon some hard-shelled organisms to get their teeth well-trimmed. There are four teeth in total; two face upward while the other two face downward.
There is almost no space between them. At first glance, it may look like these fish have beaks. However, these sharp teeth open shellfish, mussels, and other hard organisms.
6. Quick Transformation
When they feel danger or an unsafe situation, they get puffed up and increase their size automatically. Pufferfish are not very good at swimming; therefore, they can’t escape danger . When these fish notice a predator, they immediately puff up and show themselves as big as they can. They do so to make the predator see them as big and hard to eat.
In many countries, Pufferfish are eaten, but not everyone can make a dish out of this toxic fish. As we talked about earlier, these fish have a neurotoxin called tetrodotoxin. Experience and practice of 3 years are needed for making an edible dish out of this monster. Even just a touch of an alive Puffer Fish can result in fatal damage to your neurons. Hence, you can imagine what can happen if you eat one as a dish.
10. No Scales!
As these Pufferfish need to increase their size, scales are a problem for them. These are creatures having rough and thick skin all over the body. Some of the species have some spines all over their bodies, so as to protect them against predators.
However, they don’t have any scales; that’s why water variation diseases easily catch them. In addition, they are very sensitive, unlike other fish, and get ill very easily. Therefore, they need good care and a more regular water check.
You will be amazed to know that the largest Puffer Fish is reported to be 1 meter. However, when we talk about the smallest one, it is just 8 cm long. They have long tapered bodies with bulb-like heads.
If you want, you can also keep a small Puffer Fish in your fish tank with a capacity of 30 gallons. However, if you want to keep a bigger Puffer Fish, you require a 125 gallons tank or an even bigger one.
12. Color Science
As Pufferfish are not supposed to have a proper color pattern, they can be found in many colors like blue, gray, white, brown, and yellow. Meleagris, a type of Pufferfish, has a beautiful yellow color which looks so good that you can’t take your eyes off it.
It has brown stripes all over its body. Surely, all 100 species of Puffer Fish have different designs, colors, and patterns. Some even have dangerous stings loaded with tetrodotoxin.
At last, it is sure that nature provides every organism with a way to protect itself from others. And beautiful and calm-looking Puffer Fish can turn into an enormous dangerous monster. Such poisonous creatures take ocean life to a new level, encouraging one to study more about aquatic life. We hope you liked and learned various interesting and lesser-known facts about Puffer Fish from the above article.