Pufferfish looking skinny with strange lump from gills?

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Hi, I’ve had this puffer for about 3 years now and for about a year and a bit he’s unfortunately had weed growing on his face.. it seems to but growing within the ‘bones’ of his upper jaw and actually pushes the skin back of his lip
He’s had this obviously for a while and hasn’t seemingly been affected, and we now try to remove it at regular intervals when we I think it’s getting too much for him and potentially he can’t eat. Recently however it seems to have been grown back fast than normal in the photo we removed the last piece of weed around two weeks ago. We are concerned that he is getting thinner and now we have noticed that when he seems to breathe a small pink lump seems to emerge from his gills. I’ve included 2 photos to show when the lump is viable and when it’s not, on occasion it stays stuck outwards but then goes back in. Removing the weed obviously causes him stress and we tried to do it as little as possible but whatever we do we can’t seem to stop it from growing back and I’m worried about using any kind of chemical in case it hurts him/her. I would appreciate any advice on this as I’m worried that he seems to be getting more unwell although he still eats even with the weed on his face



Staff member
No clue what the lump is. I suspect he has some sort of infection and that is what is growing around his mouth, it isn’t plants. Either bacterial or fungal Infection.


Staff member
Treat it with antibiotics. It sounds like it has been there a long time so you will likely need to treat for quite a while. If a couple courses of antibiotics doesn't work you will need to approach it as fungal which is much harder to fix. Either way, buy some Selcon and soak it’s food in it before you feed. Selcon is a nutritional supplement and will help boost its immune system. What kind of food are you feeding him.
He’s in a mixed reef tank with about 8 other fish.. they currently get a pinch of flake in the morning and 3 blocks of frozen marine mix in the evenings
I look into getting him a supplement :)