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DWARF SPOTTED PUFFER (Carinotetraodon Imitator)

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This species fares best in a heavily-planted setup, perhaps further decorated with twisted roots and branches to provide additional cover. This type of set-up will provide plenty of broken lines of sight (important to reduce aggression between individuals) and a varied habitat for these inquisitive fish to explore. The use of floating plants to diffuse the light is also recommended, and the fish will usually be more active and confident under these conditions. Try and keep water movement to a minimum as the species inhabits very still waters in nature. Like most puffers it’s very sensitive to deteriorating water conditions, so regular partial water changes are a must.

Not usually recommended for the community tank, as it tends to nip the fins of slow-moving or long-finned fish. It’s small size also means it doesn’t compete well for food with more active, vigorous species and could easily end up on the menu of larger companions. Tankmates must therefore be chosen with care. Smaller Loricariids (particularly Otocinclus spp.) tend to be a decent choice. There are also reports (with varying degrees of success) of cohabitation with some of the freshwater shrimp species that have become so popular in the hobby in recent years.