The manner of eating is, depending on the puffer, very different. Among genera which live under the sea and in a coral reef (for instance Arothrin and Canthigaster), one can find many growth eaters. Theses fishes eat growth containing leaf-algae and Detritus. They eat especially lower animals like corals, sponges, sea squirts etc. Nevertheless, most of the puffers nourish from hard-shelled invertebrates like snails, clams, sea urchins, or large and small crabs. A few, so-called carnivore puffers like Tetraodon Miurus, T.Suvatti, and T.Palembangensis, are specialized on hunting small fish. They are real predatory puffers and only eat fish in the tank. However, a customary puffer fish particularly needs snails to keep its teeth short.
A few common puffers also eat other living and frozen food (some rare species or individuals take dry food) but the bulk of their feed has to consist of dead or living snails.
Some rare puffer species are, concerning their food, very specialized. For example, one can find a few Auriglobus species, which have specialized on fish-flippers or insects. Furthermore, there are some puffer fishes, that solely eat calamari.
Puffers, which do not take very hard food in a tank, are reassigned to death, because one does not know how they keep their teeth short in nature.
Concerning the tank, one should pay attention to the following: the main problem is a constant need of hard food (almost exclusively snails). It is especially important to feed puffers with food from their natural habits. Marine puffers should get food-animals from the sea and fresh water puffers preferable animals living in fresh water or on the mainland. Brackish water puffers can be fed with food-animals from both areas.
Puffers tend to overeat. To do them good, one should feed frequently and not in great quantities. A day of feeding break does not harm a well-fed puffer and is even healthy for it.
Alternation of food is advisable concerning puffers and all other fish.
As mentioned above, snails are the main food of fresh- and brackish water puffers. For that reason, we prepared a special part for snails, where one can learn more about breeding and keeping snails in order to have enough food the puffers.