Tangs and other surgeonfish aggression

How do you deal with aggression from multiple tangs in a tank?

  • No aggression since introduced

    Votes: 5 41.7%
  • Mirror trick

    Votes: 5 41.7%
  • Isolation box

    Votes: 1 8.3%
  • Sump timeout

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Nori on demand

    Votes: 2 16.7%
  • Multiple feedings a day

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Rehoming aggressor

    Votes: 1 8.3%

  • Total voters
    12

crazyfishmom

Valuable Member
View Badges
Joined
Oct 29, 2023
Messages
1,737
Reaction score
2,621
Location
North Andover
Rating - 100%
2   0   0
Maybe I’ve been incredibly lucky and I am about to talk into WW3 one of these days but I am keeping a gem, two yellows, a hippo, blue eyed two spot bristletooth, PBT, and a purple together (also have a fox face) without aggression.

The gem and yellows are the largest and were introduced at the same time, then came foxy and they were together for a bit before I added the hippo. The hippo is just about as large as the other guys (5-6 inches) and they were not super happy when she came along. It was mostly posturing though and after a day they were all swimming together and doing well.

I then added a blue eyed bristletooth who is about 2 inches and they didn’t even notice her. I think my dwarf angels chased her around for a few minutes but that was it. PBT is about 2.5 inches and the blue hippo was mad for about a half hour but then stopped chasing him.

Yesterday I introduced a purple and he’s about 2 inches; one of my yellows was chasing him all over the place and I had a few minutes where I thought he was really going to hurt him but today he looks just fine and is swimming around happily without anyone paying attention.

I feel like I mostly hear about multiple tangs tearing each other apart but then I see all of these amazing tanks with half a dozen tangs doing great together so I want to get more opinions.

What’s it been like for you with multiple tangs?

Tang gang getting along
 

exnisstech

7500 Club Member
View Badges
Joined
Feb 11, 2019
Messages
8,651
Reaction score
11,705
Location
Ashland Ohio
Rating - 0%
0   0   0
Naso, purple, yellow, hippo and convict in a 6ft 180g with no aggression. I added two yellows at once and ended up having to pull one because the other was attacking it relentlessly. I have 3 biota yellows and a vlamingii growing out in my new tank and am hoping I won't have too much aggression when I bring the big gang over but we'll see. I have a powder Brown fattening up in a stock tank that will also be coming into the new tank so that should be interesting.
The gang


Some of the babies

 
OP
OP
C

crazyfishmom

Valuable Member
View Badges
Joined
Oct 29, 2023
Messages
1,737
Reaction score
2,621
Location
North Andover
Rating - 100%
2   0   0
Naso, purple, yellow, hippo and convict in a 6ft 180g with no aggression. I added two yellows at once and ended up having to pull one because the other was attacking it relentlessly. I have 3 biota yellows and a vlamingii growing out in my new tank and am hoping I won't have too much aggression when I bring the big gang over but we'll see. I have a powder Brown fattening up in a stock tank that will also be coming into the new tank so that should be interesting.
The gang


Some of the babies


Thank you for sharing! Gorgeous tank and tang gangs!
 

Troylee

all about the diy!!!!!
View Badges
Joined
Jan 15, 2010
Messages
18,917
Reaction score
15,874
Location
Vegas baby!!!!
Rating - 0%
0   0   0
I haven’t had problems with the 6 I got… I was really scared to add a cbb but I just did it anyways and they harassed him for a day or so but all is well now..
 

o2manyfish

Valuable Member
View Badges
Joined
Jul 19, 2012
Messages
1,446
Reaction score
3,182
Location
Encino, CA
Rating - 0%
0   0   0
Within Chaos there is peace. If you have 2 bullies they fight. But if you have a whole room full of bullies... They drink beer and lie about their achievements. Fish are no different.

If you have 2 aggressive fish like tangs they naturally go after each other to be dominant. That's why with most schooling type fish it's recommended to get them in groups of 3 or more. The more you have then the less chance of one beating up the other, because there is always another fish in view to chase.

Of course all this is dependent on particular fish personalities. And you can easily break the peace in a tang gang by tossing in a Sohal or a Clown Tang.

I've been keeping groups of tangs in my various sized tank for more than 30 years. I usually have 10+ tangs in my tanks - From 125g up to 750g as I upgraded over the years - And in the 30 years there have been a few fish that got a chip on their shoulder, after many years with the group, and had to be removed. One was a purple tang who outgrew the other 9 yellows, 6 purples, Gem and Black (just the zebrasomas in the tank at that time) and all of a sudden went agro overnight.

Another was a small Altantic Blue tang that we had kept for a couple of years in an outdoor 180g frag tank and was about a 2.5" fish. The wife liked the Atlantic Blue and wanted it moved inside to the 400g. In less than 2 months that fish shot from 2.5" to 5"+ and turned into a prick, and back outside he went.

In our current 750 we have (3) Yellow, (3) Purple, (6) Hippo, Mimic, Kole, Gem, Black, Flame Tail and Achilles.

All of these are pretty good sized fish. The purples and yellows we have had for 10+ years and are in the 6" size range. We had an aggression issue with the Achilles last summer. He wasn't going after the other tangs in the tank but the all the tiny small fish. We have about 140 fish in the 750 which includes lots of Gobies, blennies, anthias and dwarf angels. And the Achilles was going after these tiny innocent fish. So we caught him and put him in timeout for about 4 months in the outdoor frag tank. We moved him back into the 750 in the fall and since come back inside he has been as mellow as can be.

Dave B
 
OP
OP
C

crazyfishmom

Valuable Member
View Badges
Joined
Oct 29, 2023
Messages
1,737
Reaction score
2,621
Location
North Andover
Rating - 100%
2   0   0
Within Chaos there is peace. If you have 2 bullies they fight. But if you have a whole room full of bullies... They drink beer and lie about their achievements. Fish are no different.

If you have 2 aggressive fish like tangs they naturally go after each other to be dominant. That's why with most schooling type fish it's recommended to get them in groups of 3 or more. The more you have then the less chance of one beating up the other, because there is always another fish in view to chase.

Of course all this is dependent on particular fish personalities. And you can easily break the peace in a tang gang by tossing in a Sohal or a Clown Tang.

I've been keeping groups of tangs in my various sized tank for more than 30 years. I usually have 10+ tangs in my tanks - From 125g up to 750g as I upgraded over the years - And in the 30 years there have been a few fish that got a chip on their shoulder, after many years with the group, and had to be removed. One was a purple tang who outgrew the other 9 yellows, 6 purples, Gem and Black (just the zebrasomas in the tank at that time) and all of a sudden went agro overnight.

Another was a small Altantic Blue tang that we had kept for a couple of years in an outdoor 180g frag tank and was about a 2.5" fish. The wife liked the Atlantic Blue and wanted it moved inside to the 400g. In less than 2 months that fish shot from 2.5" to 5"+ and turned into a prick, and back outside he went.

In our current 750 we have (3) Yellow, (3) Purple, (6) Hippo, Mimic, Kole, Gem, Black, Flame Tail and Achilles.

All of these are pretty good sized fish. The purples and yellows we have had for 10+ years and are in the 6" size range. We had an aggression issue with the Achilles last summer. He wasn't going after the other tangs in the tank but the all the tiny small fish. We have about 140 fish in the 750 which includes lots of Gobies, blennies, anthias and dwarf angels. And the Achilles was going after these tiny innocent fish. So we caught him and put him in timeout for about 4 months in the outdoor frag tank. We moved him back into the 750 in the fall and since come back inside he has been as mellow as can be.

Dave B
Love to hear stories like this! Thanks for sharing! I had a similar thought when I started looking into the possibility of keeping multiple tangs together and multiple dwarf angels where I figured they might behave like cichlids do and would be fine if kept in large enough groups but only really saw negative accounts (almost like bad restaurant reviews). Really great to hear about your experience in such a large system as I would love many tangs in my dream tank (500-600 gallons).
 

Caption This Contest OFFICIAL VOTING POLL! (make a post in this thread and you could win a prize too)

  • "What do you mean?! I am smiling!

  • "Did she really just rejoin the ReefAholics Anonymous group...AGAIN?!"

  • "Take a look at the new Sexy Shrimp!"

  • "I'm funny how, I mean funny like I'm a clownfish? I amuse you?"

  • "Looks like your living room is going through the ugly stage"

  • "Aghhh! Go put on your makeup before feeding me, please!"

  • "You try eating sand and not get constipated!"

  • "Everyone, hide! The landlord is coming!"

  • "He touched the butt!"

  • "They forgot to shut off the RO line and left for work...AGAIN"

  • "Get off my sand!"

  • "What do you mean I can't say that on a family friendly forum?"

  • "My face looking over my bank statement after a reef show..."

  • "Kids, you're grounded! Get back in my mouth!"

  • "When you see a human with a bucket and know somethings is about to go down."


Results are only viewable after voting.
Back
Top