Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Tetraodontiformes
(Puffers and filefishes) > Tetraodontidae
(Puffers) > Tetraodontinae
Etymology: Tetraodon: Greek, tetra = four + Greek, odous = teeth (Ref. 45335). More on author: Linnaeus.
Environment / Climate / Range
Freshwater; brackish; demersal; pH range: 7.0 - ? ; dH range: 10 - ?. Tropical; 24°C - 26°C (Ref. 2060)
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 43.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 2829); max. published weight: 1.0 kg (Ref. 3799)
Morphology | Morphometrics
(total): 2 - 3;
soft rays: 7 - 8. Diagnosis: skin scaleless, but head and body covered with small spines except on snout and caudal region; teeth form beak-like structure consisting in each jaw of two pieces fused on midline and covered by layer of enamel; nostrils consisting of two fleshy lobes placed in front of folded collar surrounding the opening; two pairs of non-perforated nasal tentacles; dorsal and anal fins short and placed far back on body; pectoral fins well developed; no pelvic fins; caudal fin rounded, its length comprised 3 times in SL; longitudinal stripes along sides of body in adults; black-rimmed red ocelli (eyespots) present in juveniles (Ref. 57417).
Africa: Nile (Ref. 1880, 31439, 58460), Chad (Ref. 367, 57417), Senegal, Gambia, Geba, Volta River basins (Ref. 57417). Also found in Lake Turkana in Kenya (Ref. 52331).
Found in large rivers (Ref. 2829), open water, weed beds and vegetated fringes; feeds on mollusks (Ref. 28714). Ventral pocket communicates gill chamber with oesophagus, allowing fish to inflate its body like a ball (Ref. 57417).
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Roberts, T.R., 1986. Tetraodontidae. p. 434-436. In J. Daget, J.-P. Gosse and D.F.E. Thys van den Audenaerde (eds.) Check-list of the freshwater fishes of Africa (CLOFFA). ISNB, Brussels; MRAC, Tervuren; and ORSTOM, Paris. Vol. 2. (Ref. 2829)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 96402)
CITES (Ref. 94142)
Threat to humans
Fisheries: of no interest
Common namesSynonymsMetabolismPredatorsEcotoxicologyReproductionMaturitySpawningFecundityEggsEgg development
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates of some properties based on models
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.5000 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.02692 (0.01216 - 0.05956), b=2.88 (2.69 - 3.07), based on LWR estimates for this Subfamily-body shape (Ref. 93245
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278
): 3.6 ±0.50 se; Based on food items.
Resilience (Ref. 69278
): Medium, minimum population doubling time 1.4 - 4.4 years (Preliminary K or Fecundity.).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Low to moderate vulnerability (31 of 100) .