Ok we know you’re probably sick of white tangs over the last couple weeks but this one is different because it’s a scopas tang from the Indian Ocean. The images of this near-solid white Zebrasoma scopas come to us from Abyss Aquatics, an aquarium specialty store in the UK that carries a full line of fresh and saltwater fish. The white scopas tang sold almost immediately to one of their more affluent clients for a hefty sum. The white scopas tang is scheduled to hang out at Abyss Aquatics for a couple of weeks until it is transferred to a new large reef aquarium.
Abyss Aquatics received this white scopas tang from Tropical Marine Center, whom you may know better as an equipment manufacturer but they are also one of the largest livestock wholesalers in the UK. TMC has great suppliers of Indian Ocean fish like Liopropoma africanum and they are also the supplier of many of the tricolor scopas tangs that we’ve seen in England.
So how do we know that this is a white scopas tang? Well besides the fact that the large Indian Ocean scopas tangs from TMC very often have some kind of aberrant color pattern, if you carefully study the snout of this surgeonfish you’ll notice it is much more pronounced with a downward slant typical of Zebrasoma scopas, and distinct from the smaller and more rounded snouts of yellow tangs.
We have to wonder why these white tangs are popping up all over the globe all at once. We can only imagine that these aberrant and white tangs have been mostly left on the reef all this time because ornamental fish collectors thought they were sick and avoided them. Perhaps now that the word has gotten out that these unusual surgeonfish are highly sought after and fetching big bucks, the collectors are now being instructed to specifically go after them. This is probably not the last we’ve heard of the white tang saga.