Puffer Fish – Protein Rich Poison

By Justin Colby

Puffer fish are usually considered as the next toxic vertebrate subsequent to Golden poison frog. Other nomenclature given to this fish are globe fish, blow fish, swell fish, etc. The fish swells to about double its usual size when it is endangered by gulping a lot of water. The swimming speed of puffer fish reduces to almost half of its usual speed when it increases its size to double. This category of vertebrate has around 100 species which are mostly found in tropical and sub tropical regions. They are present in the waters of Pacific Ocean, Atlantic Ocean, and Indian Ocean.

By external appearance the puffer seems to be very cute, attractive and colorful. The manner in which they swim, their eyes, the globe like looking abdomen part all adds to the beauty of this species. The mouth and fins of these puffers are very small. The size can vary from some inches to roughly 2 feet in length. It has a very stretchable skin and some species also have spines. It is very fascinating to look at but some internal organs like liver, ovaries, muscles and skin of this organism are very poisonous. The venom present in them is very powerful and fatal. The name of this poison is tetrodoxin. It is more fatal than cyanide and no remedy solution of this venom has been known till date.

Many people fascinate to keep puffers in their aquarium because of its beauty and attractive color and look. They need to be very careful while choosing other companions for this particular species of fish. Puffers predate on other animals present in the water and have very malicious nature. They can be very hostile and violent if they are not given sufficient food. One has to take good care of its diet and feed them well. The most advised companions for puffers are rainbow fish and barbs. People prefer to keep freshwater small puffer fish as they are less dangerous. Crabs and shrimp are generally not preferred to keep with puffers in the aquarium because they will bite at anything that has long fins or is smaller than them.

Believe it or not, the recipe of puffer fish is very famous in Japan, Korea and China. In Japan it is known as Fugu, he2 tun2 in China and Bok in Korea. The dish of puffer fish is prepared by trained cooks because it is very poisonous. For cooking the skin of the puffer fish is taken out by many chefs before they die so that the poison does not go into the eatable part of the fish.

For more information on puffer fish go to puffer fish

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