Yellow Blackspotted Puffer

The Yellow Blackspotted Puffer, scientifically named Arothron citrinellus, is a captivating marine species that has captured the attention of aquarium enthusiasts worldwide. Known for its vibrant appearance, unique behavior, and charming personality, this pufferfish species stands out as a popular choice for both novice and experienced hobbyists. In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into the intriguing world of the Yellow Blackspotted Puffer, exploring its size, appearance, natural habitat, behavior, dietary preferences, and expert advice on successfully keeping them in your own home aquarium.


The Yellow Blackspotted Puffer boasts a moderate size, reaching an average length of 30 cm (11,8 inches) in captivity. Its distinctive appearance includes a bright yellow body adorned with captivating black spots and markings. The puffer’s expressive eyes and endearing mouth contribute to its unique charm.


Arothron citrinellus is native to the warm tropical waters of the Indo-Pacific region, including the Red Sea and the western coast of Africa. These puffers are typically found in coral reefs and shallow lagoons, where they seek shelter among crevices and rocks. Creating a suitable environment that mimics these conditions is essential for their well-being.


The Yellow Blackspotted Puffer is known for its curious and playful behavior. While they can be shy initially, they often become active and engaging once they acclimate to their surroundings. These puffers are highly intelligent and can recognize their owners, often approaching the tank glass for interaction.


In the wild, Arothron citrinellus feeds on a diet primarily consisting of a variety of small crustaceans, mollusks, and invertebrates found within coral reefs. In an aquarium setting, their diet should include a mix of high-quality protein-based foods such as frozen or live brine shrimp, mysis shrimp, krill, and chopped marine flesh. Providing a diverse diet helps maintain their health and encourages natural behavior.

Keeping Yellow Blackspotted Puffer at home

Creating an optimal environment for Yellow Blackspotted Puffers requires careful attention to tank setup, water parameters, and tank mates. Here are some key factors to consider:

Tank size: Provide a spacious aquarium with a minimum capacity of 1000 liters (264 gallons) for a single Yellow Blackspotted Puffer. These puffers require ample space to swim and explore.
Water parameters: Maintain water temperature between 24-28 °C (75-82 °F) and a pH level around 8.1-8.4. Regular water changes of around 10-20% every two weeks help maintain water quality.
Aquarium setup: Decorate the tank with live rock, coral rubble, and ample hiding spots. These puffers are natural diggers, so ensure a sandy substrate that accommodates their behavior.
Tank mates: Choose tank mates carefully, as Yellow Blackspotted Puffers may exhibit aggression towards smaller fish and invertebrates. Consider housing them with larger, aggressive marine species that can handle their presence. They are not reef safe and can and will nip at corals.

The Yellow Blackspotted Puffer, with its striking appearance and engaging behavior, is a remarkable addition to marine aquariums. By understanding their size, habitat, behavior, and dietary requirements, you can create a thriving and visually captivating underwater world within your own home. Embrace the opportunity to care for Arothron citrinellus, and you’ll be rewarded with endless moments of beauty and interaction, as well as the joy of witnessing the vibrant personality of this charming marine species.

Scientific nameArothron citrinellus
Type of aquariumMarine
Size30 cm / 11,8 inches
RegionIndo-Pacific region, including Red Sea
Ideal tank size1000 liters / 264 gallons
Ideal water temperature24-28 °C / 75-82 °F
DietProtein-rich foods, crustaceans, mollusks
Life spanAround 10 years
SchoolingGenerally solitary, may exhibit aggression towards tank mates

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