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Blue Tang

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This shrimp is so good it needs to be seen in wide
Sep 16, 2003
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Common name(s): Blue Tang, Pacific Blue Tang, Regal Tang, Hippo Tang.

Scientific name: Paracanthurus hepatus

Family: Acanthuridae

Origin: Warm waters of the Pacific Ocean (Indo-Pacific)

Maximum size: Up to 12 inches.

Care: The Blue Tang is a very popular marine specimen for marine setups. A 75 gallon tank minimum is recommended to keep these fish. The fish's maximum size is approximately 12 inches in a home aquarium. Specific gravity is best around 1.023 and 1.027. Recommended pH levels can be between pH 8 to 8.5 and hardness of dKH 8-12. They do best in temperatures ranging from 72F-78F (22C-26C). Blue tangs are a peaceful fish that will get along with most other marine species however they should not be housed with other tangs as they may become aggressive towards their own species.

Feeding: Blue Tangs should receive a diet consisting of vegetable matter (i.e. dried seaweed), marine angel food and mysis shrimp. They will willingly accept other foods such as brine shrimp and pellets/flakes.

Sexing and Breeding: Breeding is difficult to achieve in captivity and not much information is known on it.

Comments: The brilliant blue colour of a Blue Tang can change depending on the mood of the fish. Netting blue tangs are not recommended due to this fish's intolorance with stress. Luring it into a container is best.

Note: The Blue Tang is particularly prone to diseases and for this reason they are not a perfect beginner’s fish. However provided water quality is near perfect, feeding is regular and varied, tank space is vast and tank mates are chosen carefully, the blue tang should thrive.

Mod Note: The blue tang is considered a reef-compatible fish. This specimen is commonly sold as a very small fish at the lfs, so, keep in mind the aquarium size you will need to house this beautiful animal. There is another similarly named tang, Acanthurus coeruleus, the Blue Carribbean Tang, which is sold online, requires a larger tank and is more difficult to take care of.

Photo: A Blue Tang


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