Do people overexaggerate tangs

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i cant think

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I know - I posted the research several days ago. You are absolutely correct Acanthurus tangs can and do seem a far length daily. The point being - some do not - and if they do - its not 'for fun' -or 'to relieve stress' - its to get food.
yeah, that’s very true. I have seen Ctenochaetus tangs to just swim in “patches” which is why I assume the smaller ones are told to be suitable for 4’ tanks (I.e. twin spot, square tail, white tail, yellow eye kole). I certainly do think that Acanthurus tangs thrive better in 8’ tanks and truly do often need that space, I mean a naso needs 8’ but not because it’s a hyperactive swimmer (IME these fish are actually the calmest swimmers of all the tangs) but mainly due to its VERY large size - I think the smallest of that genus can get 18” and the largest of that genus is sat at 2’ long (24”). The Zebrasoma tangs I can’t speak on about their wild swimming pattern since I have never seen a wild one. Paracanthurus… 8’ tank at the bare minimum as 6”-7” adults for certain, just look at one in captivity and you’ll understand. Prionurus, now this genus I don’t think is kept in captivity or if it is then they’re in the largest of tanks, they’re very similar to the Acanthurus in swim patterns.
 
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N.Sreefer

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Most of the tangs I seen around key largo when I was a kid were all either bigger ones that would kinda cruise along the rock and out of sight or smaller ones that kinda circled the top of the reef and didn't seem to go far. No idea what species the bigger guys were a bluish brownish colour with a circle of yellow on the tail. The little guys were a muted yellow color (not bright yellow like yellow tangs).
 

i cant think

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Most of the tangs I seen around key largo when I was a kid were all either bigger ones that would kinda cruise along the rock and out of sight or smaller ones that kinda circled the top of the reef and didn't seem to go far. No idea what species the bigger guys were a bluish brownish colour with a circle of yellow on the tail. The little guys were a muted yellow color (not bright yellow like yellow tangs).
Did they look like this by any chance? This is A. coeruleus (Caribbean blues).
AC6F9224-31C5-43DE-AD40-5F5116A31110.jpeg
 

N.Sreefer

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Did they look like this by any chance? This is A. coeruleus (Caribbean blues).
AC6F9224-31C5-43DE-AD40-5F5116A31110.jpeg
That def looks like the bigger guys the little guys looked alot more dull than that but that could have been because of the distance I was viewing them from. Where we were kids the dive leader wouldn't let us very near the reef so I was probably 40 feet or more from them. I am very scared to go back and dive the areas I did as a kid I imagine it looks very different now.
 
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Zekireef

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Careful not to run afoul of the Tang Police. Tangs are overrated, dumb, disease magnets and overpriced. Everyone should try to have at least one (preferably in a 25-gallon tank). ;)
This is very true!! Tangs are overrated! They’re cool if you have a job for them (loosely keeping algae under control) and can manage the disease but but beyond that, there are better fish, that are more interesting and colourful and aren’t anywhere near as dumb haha! I’d prefer a bustling reef with smaller fish of all sorts over a couple of tangs, all day everyday!
 

Zekireef

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I know - I posted the research several days ago. You are absolutely correct Acanthurus tangs can and do seem a far length daily. The point being - some do not - and if they do - its not 'for fun' -or 'to relieve stress' - its to get food.
That’s the issue though, whether it’s for food or not, they are still accustomed to travelling those distances. It is what it is, and given we’re not providing that, the best we can do is keep them well fed, healthy and happy (which needs the adequate setup to keep water conditions good, generally equating to a larger tank, a vigorous nutrient export plan, or both). This is something a lot of reefers just don’t do. I was giving my desjardini and purple a sheet of nori a day along with pellets, frozen food and what they graze, with both being beefy as heck, I chucked my purple in a 1.5 inches and in the span of 5 months it shot out to 4 inches. They would come up to the left half of the tank when I was nearby as they associated my silhouette with food and the feeding porthole was placed on the left hand side but would just cruise around grazing outside whenever I was in the room but away from the tank.
 

MnFish1

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That’s the issue though, whether it’s for food or not, they are still accustomed to travelling those distances. It is what it is, and given we’re not providing that, the best we can do is keep them well fed, healthy and happy (which needs the adequate setup to keep water conditions good, generally equating to a larger tank, a vigorous nutrient export plan, or both). This is something a lot of reefers just don’t do. I was giving my desjardini and purple a sheet of nori a day along with pellets, frozen food and what they graze, with both being beefy as heck, I chucked my purple in a 1.5 inches and in the span of 5 months it shot out to 4 inches. They would come up to the left half of the tank when I was nearby as they associated my silhouette with food and the feeding porthole was placed on the left hand side but would just cruise around grazing outside whenever I was in the room but away from the tank.
I don't disagree with the point. I just think its odd to not consider the fact (I don't mean you - I mean some members of the reefing community) - to think that a 6 foot tank is much worse than an 8 foot tank for nearly all the fish we keep - considering the distances they ALL travel. Or for that matter that a 5 foot tank is worse than a 6 foot tank, etc etc. I tend to base my decisions for fish on their size - and how they look in the tank. For example - you could keep a 15 inch tang in a 4 foot tank - BUT - IMHO - it would not 'look good'. it would be way out of proportion. I am not going to go into 'happy or not'. My personal preference is to look at the tank as a moving picture - like lets say 'a calm movie' as compared to a news channel showing rioting in the street.
 

Zekireef

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I don't disagree with the point. I just think its odd to not consider the fact (I don't mean you - I mean some members of the reefing community) - to think that a 6 foot tank is much worse than an 8 foot tank for nearly all the fish we keep - considering the distances they ALL travel. Or for that matter that a 5 foot tank is worse than a 6 foot tank, etc etc. I tend to base my decisions for fish on their size - and how they look in the tank. For example - you could keep a 15 inch tang in a 4 foot tank - BUT - IMHO - it would not 'look good'. it would be way out of proportion. I am not going to go into 'happy or not'. My personal preference is to look at the tank as a moving picture - like lets say 'a calm movie' as compared to a news channel showing rioting in the street.
I love the bold bit especially, and I think this gets lost in the sauce way too often!

like many of us have said, it’s not so much the size of the tank, it’s having an exit strategy in place for when things will inevitably go pear shaped if you’re not doing the best you can to keep a fish happy or if things are going so well the tangs outgrows the tank(like you said with proportions). This is why I think in general, people don’t overrate the care requirements for tangs, but rather people shop the question ‘ tang in a x foot long’ around until they get the answer they want.
Sure, we have the dreaded tang police who have the standard knee jerk of gallonages in the 1000s for one hippo tang, but I’d wager there are many more reefers who have had their fingers burned and are providing their advice based on that.

I’ve always gone with ideal tank size and conditions and not minimums, because every situation is different, an underfed tang in a 1500 gal tank will be worse off than a fat and healthy tang in a 120 gal, it is all situational hehe!
 

TerraFerma

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I know - I posted the research several days ago. You are absolutely correct Acanthurus tangs can and do seem a far length daily. The point being - some do not - and if they do - its not 'for fun' -or 'to relieve stress' - its to get food.

Fair point - they aren't swimming for fun
 
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i cant think

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This is very true!! Tangs are overrated! They’re cool if you have a job for them (loosely keeping algae under control) and can manage the disease but but beyond that, there are better fish, that are more interesting and colourful and aren’t anywhere near as dumb haha! I’d prefer a bustling reef with smaller fish of all sorts over a couple of tangs, all day everyday!
This is the same with me! If I could do anything to change my tank I’d either go for a white tailed bristletooth (I do still like my twin spot but he’s just a bit dull, although his personality is fun to watch, diving throughout the rocks all day and not just out the front of the tank 24/7) or another tilefish, I mean yes they don’t do the same jobs however I already have a foxface doing the job of a Zebrasoma, and besides nothing beats the personality of my tilefish I have now (In and out of the rocks, hovers outside the cave and then just in the cave and poking his head out every so often).
 

Alphasig293

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I have a 220 6’x2’x30”. I currently have a yellow tang, powder blue, powder brown, sailfin, hippo tang,l in the tank currently with a purple, blonde naso, and a gem tang going in the tank in a few weeks. To me it comes down to keeping them fed and having enough space for them to swim. I would like to add an Achilles or even a koi scopas…but I feel I’m pushing my luck.
Other inhabitants are a harlequin tusk and a pair of lighting clowns.
 

i cant think

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I have a 220 6’x2’x30”. I currently have a yellow tang, powder blue, powder brown, sailfin, hippo tang,l in the tank currently with a purple, blonde naso, and a gem tang going in the tank in a few weeks. To me it comes down to keeping them fed and having enough space for them to swim. I would like to add an Achilles or even a koi scopas…but I feel I’m pushing my luck.
Other inhabitants are a harlequin tusk and a pair of lighting clowns.
I think with an Achilles, you’d set something off between the two PBTs since the Goldrim, both PBTs and Achilles are in the same group (Hence why there’s “so many” hybrids of them). I’d love to see a photo of your tank though! It sounds beautiful (I’d be careful on the Sailfin though with the size they get because of their fins being different to the other Zebrasoma tangs).
 

J1a

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calm movie
I agree with you completely on this. I feel large and calm fishes contribute to the peaceful look much better than say, a pair of clownfish.

I feel the biggest plus point for tangs is that they are sizable and reef safe. To be fair, not many fishes can fulfill both characteristics.

Angel fishes are beautiful and more intelligent (at least in my experience) but it's not a good idea to keep them in a mixed reef.

On the other hand, if one were to consider aggression, most fishes from chromis, anthias, wrasses to angels can all be aggressive in a community setting.
 

i cant think

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I agree with you completely on this. I feel large and calm fishes contribute to the peaceful look much better than say, a pair of clownfish.
I can’t be the only one who disagrees with this right? I find a slow moving fish is calming but a tang… Not so much, a large angelfish is peaceful due to its calm swimming, I definitely find my nano much more relaxing than my 4’ tank due to the slow movements and smaller fish in it.
 
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J1a

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I can’t be the only one who disagrees with this right? I find a slow moving fish is calming but a tang… Not so much, a large angelfish is peaceful due to its calm swimming, I definitely find my nano much more relaxing than my 4’ tank due to the slow movements and smaller fish in it.
I find my larger tangs quite "chill" about things. On the other hand, I would agree with you that Angelfishes are even more calm, but reef safe-ness precludes having them in my aquarium.


*Edited to add a video I just grab off my aquarium, the water is cloudy because I just added some coral snow.
 
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Alphasig293

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I think with an Achilles, you’d set something off between the two PBTs since the Goldrim, both PBTs and Achilles are in the same group (Hence why there’s “so many” hybrids of them). I’d love to see a photo of your tank though! It sounds beautiful (I’d be careful on the Sailfin though with the size they get because of their fins being different to the other Zebrasoma tangs).
DECF144C-8B48-4A6D-B2A6-18A90EB738E9.jpeg
 

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