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Pufferfish (Arthron hispidus)

1. Nomenclature
2. Species Description
3. Energy
4. Population
5. Habitat
6. Evolution
7. Works Cited

  • Puffer fish go by the names of: Puffers, Baloonfish, Blowfish, Bubblefish, Globefish, Swellfish, Toadfish, Toadies, Honey toad, and see sqab.
  • There scientific name is: Arthron hispidus
  • Scientific Classification:
    • Kingdom-Animalia,
    • Phylum-Chordata,
    •  Subphylum-Vertebrata,
    • Class-Actinopterygii,
    • Order-Tetraodontiformes,
    • Family-Tatraodontidae.

    Species Description


        Puffer fish are very unique looking fish. With their odd face and ability to puff up they are considered one of the "cutter" marine species. There head is long and has a hard beck that is covered by skin making it hard to see. They have four very sharp teeth, fisherman have to be careful when removing a hook so not to get their fingers bitten. The puffer fish’s claim to fame is their ability to puff up when they are in danger. They are able to this because they have no rib cage. When this happens they fill bodies with either air or water usually doubling their size. Although it is usually a very effective trait, it is dangerous because sometimes they can't deflate and this kills them. The second most famous fact about puffer fish is they contain a very toxic poison that has been known to kill people.

        The puffer fish’s behavior is solitary. Although social, they do not live in groups. If they interact it is for very limited amount of time. They like to explore and do not like to spend much time out in the open, which makes them much more vulnerable to predators. Puffer fish aren’t very fast swimmers so pretty much there only protection to predators is there ability to puff up, but there is a risk with this, sometimes the air or water gets stuck in there lungs causing them to die; this means that they don’t like to puff up. Even though there poison is very toxic to certain animals it doesn’t harm them such as sharks, which means puffer fish are still very likely to become a meal. Some puffer fish can become very aggressive and territorial when guarding there eggs. Occasionally they have even gone "crazy" when not allowed enough room. In captivity they have can be taught to recognize there owner and even beg for food.   

        There are many 121 types of puffer fish, therefore different sizes, but they usually are pretty small but on occasion they can get up to 100cm or 39in. They have hard beaks, much like a birds, that can be used to break open shells.  Because they're 121 species they can come in a variety of colors. Depending on the amount of there toxicity, usual those that are more poisonous are more brightly colored. Ones with less poison try to blend into there environment so are usually found in shades of brown and white.


        Puffer fish mostly eat invertebrates and algae. Larger ones can eat clams, mussels, and shellfish by cracking there shells open using there hard beaks. They are heterotrophy and depend on other animals for there energy. They are also secondary consumers; they consume algae but are a source of food for many sharks and a couple of birds. In Japan they are a popular food dish.





















        Puffer fish aren't endangered and in some places there population is actually growing, none of the online websites had the population of puffer fish. A couple of the limiting factors are overfishing and not enough places to live this is due to our humans destroying their natural habitat.


        Because there are many places a puffer fish live, stream, coral reefs, further into the ocean, so it is hard to calculate the amount of precipitation that happens. Also they usually live in warm places where not lots of snow falls so obviously that doesn't play a factor.

        Many puffer fish live in coral reefs and there markings help them belnd in with the sand. Much of there food soruce is alea which grows on the coral. Some speceis of them live farther into the ocean or even in fresh water. Puffer fish are very seclussive and don't really interact with other animals. If it isn't a source of food they seem to ignore other animals.

        Due to the variety of species of puffer fish, they live in many different place. Mainly in tropic and sub tropic areas, they are found in coral reefs in Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Although many species live in these places a couple live in deep sea, fresh or brackish meaning (slightly salty waters) or go there to breed and feed. A next big deciding factor of where they live is there markings; some of them have bright stomach, these tend to live closer to the top of the ocean because they blend in when predators look up because the sun. Those that have spots, live toward the bottom because they blend in with the sand.

    These are all the places you can find puffer fish, especially near the shores and coral reefs of these oceans. .
    This is usually what there natural habitat looks like!


          After the females lay the eggs they float to the surface of the ocean, then they are fertilized by the males. After for days they hatch and a shell is created around them, after these initial three weeks they loose the shell and start to create spines. They can live up to fifty years old. There if not any notisable differences between the male and female pufferfish. (this website had a phylogenetic tree on it that contain a pufferfish as well as many other marine animals. it is the fist slide and it wouldn't save as a picture so i could download it but here you go). Sciencist aren't sure what exactly puffer fish evolved from. Although we do know that there poison has become more potent as they have evolved. 

          Although the puffer fish population has slightly decreased over the years, which is mainly do to the loose of habitat and global change, compared to many other animals they are doing quiet well. No precautions are being taken to save them because they aren't endangered and some species have actually started to increase.

          Puffer fish have a odd relationship with humans. Although one puffers poison is enough to kill three fully grown humans, they are a much liked pet, and can even be trained to beg. Due to there odd looks many people want them as pets, but they have to be very carefully kept. As well as being a good pet, they also are considered a delicacy in many parts of the world. Only very skilled chefs can prepare puffer meat because it is high poisonous and there have been accounts of people dyeing from ingesting incorrectly prepared puffer fish meat. There is no cure for the poison and it can cause dizziness, vomiting, comas and death.
      This is a story about what happened when a man badly prepared puffer fish meat: On April 23, 1996 a 23 year-old man ate a piece of puffer fish about the size of a quarter. Ten to 15 minutes later he felt tingling in his mouth and lips, followed by dizziness, fatigue, headache, difficulty speaking, tightness in his upper chest, shaking, nausea and vomiting. He collapsed and was rushed to the hospital.

      Works Cited

      Works Cited

      "Puffer Fish." Elektra, 9 May 2006. Web. 16 Dec. 2009. <>.

      "Puffer Fish." Elektra, 9 May 2006. Web. 16 Dec. 2009. <>.

      "Pufferfish apperence." Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd, 2000. Web. 16 Dec. 2009. <>.

      "Pufferfish." National Geographic. National Geographic, 1998. Web. 16 Dec. 2009. <>.

      Putatunda, Rita. "Puffer Fish.", 1 Mar. 2008. Web. 16 Dec. 2009. <>.

      "Tetraodontidae." Wikipedia. Wikipedia, 2009. Web. 16 Dec. 2009. <>.

      "Wild Things: Puffer Fish." Kidz World. 2005. Web. 16 Dec. 2009. <>.