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Name:Yellow Tang, Yellow Hawaiian Tang, Yellow Surgeonfish, Yellow Sailfin Tang
Scientific name: Zebrasoma flavesenes
DISTRIBUTION - Hawaiian Islands and other parts of the pacific such as Mariana, the Marshall Islands, Marcus, Ryukyu, and Wake
HABITAT - The reefs of Hawaii and other islands in the pacific, from a depth of 2 to 45 meters.
SIZE - 10 inches in the wild, 8 inches in captivity.
TANK SIZE - Due to the nature of all tang species, these guys should ideally have a tank at least 6' long (125 gallons), however young specimens can be kept in 75 gallon tanks and do fairly well, but not long term. Ideally this tang should be in a 150 gallon tank or larger.
DIET - The yellow tang in the wild eats primarily microalgaes, macroalgaes, and zooplankton that is attached to macroalgaes. In the home aquaria, the yellow tang should be fed a variety of seaweeds, nori, spiralina algae flakes, carnivorous flakes, mysisd shrimp, brine shrimp, and bits of krill.
TANK ZONE - Everywhere if it can fit, these guys will swim in and out of rockwork in every zone of the tank.
TEMPERAMENT - Can be aggressive to other tangs and other fish (especially ones that look like a yellow tang) if proper housing is not provided, but is generally mild mannered except at feeding time where it frequently tries to out compete everything in the tank.
CHEMISTRY:
pH - 8.0-8.4
SG - 1.023-1.025
Nitrogen - nitrates can go to 20ppm without many adverse affects, nitrites and ammonia should be kept at zero.
TEMPERATURE - 74-79F
PHOTOPEROID - Near Equatorial. 12 hours of light per day.
Seasonal changes negligible.
SENSITIVITES- Like all tangs, they are a bit more susceptible to ich than the average marine fish. However, I find this more attributed to unsuitable conditions such as being housed with other tangs in the same tank that is too small. Also water quality should be fairly good, and like all tangs, they do better with quite a bit of dissolved oxygen in the water. Flow is a must! Also like all fish, they are sensitive to quick pH and salinity changes.
HARDINESS & LIFESPAN - A hardy tang, moderate compared to other fish. Lifespan is probably in the decades in length.
PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION - Body looks like a dinner plate, its snout/mouth protrudes out. Usually healthy specimens are full bodied and have no discoloring blemishes on the body or, ripped, or torn fins. They are all yellow with a white scalpel like blades on each side of their caudle peduncle. They do turn slightly white during the night, with a white band running parallel to their lateral line.
SEXES - No known difference between sexes, however it is speculated that size is an indication, males being smaller when full grown.
ACTIVITY PEAK - Diurnal
HABITS - Schooling in the wild, these grazers pick rock for micro and macro algaes. Often peaceful, but can be terrors in smaller tanks. Often recognizes their owners and will hide when others come up to the tank. They can be slightly territorial to new comers to the tank.
SPAWNING - Not well known. It is possible that they are group spawners. The first recorded successful spawning and fertilization of the eggs of this fish in captivity was the oceanic institute in 2002.
FISH COMPATIBILITY – The yellow tang is compatible with many species of fish as long as it is properly housed. As long as the fish doesn't excrete toxin into the water, doesn't eat fish smaller than its mouth, looks similar or is in the same genus, is intimidated by large fish, is a slow eater, or is very aggressive, you can bet that it will be a pretty good tank mate for a yellow tang.
INVERTEBRATE AND CORAL COMPATIBILITY – Yellow tangs are fine with all invertebrates and corals. There are only a handful of accounts of this fish eating corals or invertebrates.
OTHER NOTES - Yellow tangs are very personable and a good beginner fish once they get their feet wet.
 
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