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Red eye puffer - Carinotetraodon lorteti

Red eye puffer - Carinotetraodon lorteti

Scientific name: Carinotetraodon lorteti

Common name: Red eye puffer

Family: Tetraodontidae

Usual size in fish tanks: 5 - 6 cm (1.97 - 2.36 inch)


Recommended pH range for the species: 6.6 - 7.1

Recommended water hardness (dGH): 3 - 13°N (53.57 - 232.14ppm)

0°C 32°F30°C 86°F

Recommended temperature: 24 - 28 °C (75.2 - 82.4°F)

The way how these fish reproduce: Spawning

Where the species comes from: East Asia

Temperament to its own species: aggressive/territorial

Temperament toward other fish species: aggressive/territorial

Usual place in the tank: Bottom levels

Tank requirements

Red eye puffers, and any puffer species, are not easy fish to keep. They require a tank of at least around 20 gallons (78L) with heavy filtration to battle their messy eating habits. The tank should always be fully cycled and water quality needs to be pristine, as they don’t react well to bad water quality. Because puffers get bored very quickly and are easily spooked, their tank should be heavily planted and have plenty of hiding places.

Tank mates

Puffers are very aggressive and should be kept alone. Any tankmates, including other puffers, are likely to be hunted down and killed!


Red eye puffers are nocturnal, meaning you won’t see them too much during the day. Instead, they become active during the evening until the early morning. When awake, they are skilled hunters that constantly search the tank for prey. If stimulation in the form of plenty of plants and other places to explore is lacking, they are prone to boredom and glass surfing. If you see your puffer doing this, be sure to rethink the layout of your aquarium! Red eye puffers are very intelligent and can learn very quickly. They will often be able to tell their owner apart from other people and many puffer keepers report “bonding” with their fish.


The Red eye puffer is a carnivore and can be fed frozen foods such as blood worms and mosquito larvae. Although their teeth aren’t prone to overgrowing like other puffer species, they will still appreciate a diet supplemented with crustaceans, so you can also feed them snails (with the exception of Malaysian trumpet snails), (dwarf) shrimp, mussels and clams. These puffers should not be fed fish. Avoid overfeeding and remove any uneaten foods quickly, as rotting pieces of food are very detrimental to your water quality.


Reproduction in captivity is possible. The male will court the female by displaying his colours and dancing around her. The eggs are deposited on fine leaved plants or moss, after which the male cares for them until they hatch. The female should be removed directly after spawning.


Not too difficult. The males have a red dorsal fin and are significantly larger than females.

Pictures and content credit

Bought by from Profile was updated on 10th January 2016 thanks to

*Note: Red eye puffers prefer slightly soft, acidic water but can adapt to a relatively wide range of water values. However, they don’t deal well with ammonia, nitrites and nitrates.

Red eye puffer picture 1 Red eye puffer picture 2

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