June 28 2008,


The Achilles surgetonfish or tang is mostly imported from Hawaii, but it is not an easy species to keep in captivity. Achilles tangs can reach up to 19.5 inches and eats filamentous and macroalgae on exposed reefs. However if you see this fish at your local fish store make sure it takes meaty foods before you buy it. Most like brine-shrimp enriched with spirulina and omega 3. Macro-algae is a great tool and maintaining body weight and appeasing its natural instincts to graze for food.

It is from the the Hawaiian Islands, Micronesia and the southern tip of the Baja Peninsula in Mexico. A 120 gallon tank or higher is recommended in most cases. This fish is a territorial species and will be targeted by other tangs already in the tank. However it will dominate your reef aquarium and its temper will be roused up by erecting its fins and flashing its tails and spines as a sign of annoyance. It enjoys open waters in which to graze and should be kept singly in a tank. This species does not breed in captivity.

One thing to watch out for is that this tang is very prone to contracting a protozoan parasite infestation shortly after being introduced into the aquarium. With this in mind a quarantine tank is an ideal and garlic soaked food is good too.


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