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FAQs about Tangs of the Genus Naso 2

Related Articles: Naso TangsSurgeon Family, Acanthuridae, Lipstick Tangs,

Related FAQs: Naso Tangs 1Naso Tangs 3, Naso ID, Naso Behavior, Naso Compatibility, Naso Selection, Naso Systems, Naso Feeding, Naso Disease, Naso Reproduction, Surgeons In General, Tang ID, Selection, Tang Behavior, Compatibility, Systems, Feeding, Disease

Naso vlamingii in Mabul, Malaysia.

Surgeonfishes: Tangs for  Marine Aquariums
Diversity, Selection & Care
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by Robert (Bob) Fenner

Black Spot on Fin (NASO TANG) Hello, You have a great web site!! I have a 130 gal. salt water with a few damsels and a large puffer and a 11" Naso tang. I noticed yesterday a black spot on one fin. I have had him about a month and he came from a friends tank. He shutters a lot , but no signs of anything! <Mmm, could be "nothing"... the shuddering is natural... some melanistic spots on Naso lituratus come and go...> I keep a low dose of copper in the tank, however recently I removed all of it with a carbon pad. <I would not keep copper constantly in a main/display tank> Should I retreat with copper or formalin? <No> He eats and looks great! Nitrates have been a little high but I do weekly water changes and everything else looks good! He constantly shakes  a lot. It this <This animal does shake naturally as stated (even in the ocean), but it may be shaking more due to being in small confines... I would look into ultimately trading it in for a smaller specimen (like half this length) in your 130... or getting a much larger, longer system for it. Bob Fenner>

Re: Black Spot on Fin (NASO TANG) Bob, Thanks so much for the information ! I am removing all copper out of the tank. My Naso is doing better, however he stopped eating for a few day but I was able to get him to eat live brine shrimp last night. I suppose it was the medication in the water and now he seems to be coming around. (The black spots on the fins have disappeared). <You are very likely correct here> I have one more question! I have a 4" or 5"-saddleback clown that I bought from a dealer. <A large specimen... better not bought at adult sizes> I put in a QT tank for about 2 weeks and then put him in my show tank. I noticed some large white patchy raised spots on the tips of his fins (about 2 of them )and one on his side. He does not scratch them and he eats like a pig. I have read they are prone to parasites or Brooklynella? I am putting him back in the QT tank and removing the copper . What Do I treat with now? Formalin or anything? Dips? or wait and see! He has about a total of 4 spots on him. <I would NOT treat this specimen OR move it... but instead replace it to the main/display system, bolster its nutrition with the soaking of foods with vitamin complex (e.g. Selcon)... Not likely Brooklynella or any parasite here. Bob Fenner> HELP, CAPT. NEMO-

Re: Naso Tang Hunger Strike, Black Spot... Bob, Hope everything is going well ! I wrote you last week about my 11" Naso Tang. I was running copper on the tank and then treated him with clout (for a black spot on his fin) about the 3rd day on the clout he quit eating! <If memory serves, I mentioned NOT treating this fish... and would cease to do so NOW> The puffer and the damsels in the 130 gal. tank are fine. The water is perfect and has been through the treatment. I am pulling everything out of  the tank with carbon filters and activated carbon, all levels are much lower. <My friend... I can't tell what you mean by "perfect" or "lower"...> However, my Naso will eat very little if anything at all. It has been about a week and he is looking ok, but he has the pinched stomach. I have tried everything, live brine shrimp is the only thing he will even try to eat and very little each time if at all ! I am very concerned that he has been over medicated with the copper and clout. I have used Selcon on brine and live plants. Do you have any suggestions! <Yes... place this specimen back in the main tank if you have not already, try various algae on a "clip" near the water/air surface... Kombu, Nori, what have you, that you can get from the oriental food store or section in a main outlet> I am very worried that I am going to lose him. He is swimming around fine and breathing normal, yesterday he started staying on the bottom behind a rock (very unusual for him). <A very bad sign... Tangs rest on the bottom at night, but during the day are continuously active> If the light is on he is more active. help! <Move the fish, offer it prepared or fresh macroalgae. Bob Fenner>
Re: Naso Tang Hunger Strike
Bob, The fish that you told me NOT to treat and to move back into the main tank was the 5" saddleback clown. <Sorry re... think I've got you, your situation confused with something/someone else's that's similar> Which I did exactly what you said and he is doing great and some of the white cotton like spots have disappeared! He is doing great and eating  fine! <Ahh, good> Unfortunately, the Naso had already been treated as of my writings to you. My local Fish Store owner is the one who gave me the clout and copper treatment idea for the black splotches on the fin (I know, don't believe everything you're told!!) <I discount most all... including when I'm talking to myself!> Nonetheless, I did pick up some Kombu and Nori and will try that tonight! <This species of Naso REALLY likes macroalgae... I have seen it with its head out of water (!) in Hawai'i munching away at intertidal thallophytic material!> My water has maintained a O ammonia, O nitrite, 8.2 ph. 20 t0 40 on the nitrate( large fish only tank). Thanks for the help! <Thank you for the clarification, input. Bob Fenner>
Re: Naso Tang Hunger Strike
Bob, Just a little update! My Naso is eating very well again! Thanks for the tip on the Nori & Kombu!! He is now eating everything again! Thanks for the help !! <Good news indeed. Thank you. Bob Fenner>

Tang In Trouble? (Naso Tang Not Eating) Hi! <Hey there! Scott F. here today!> First would like to thank you all for the great site! I found answers to all  of my questions there! <Glad to hear that! We have a LOT of good information on this site...Sometimes it just takes a bit of time to research stuff...> But now I got one question I didn't find. <Sure> I have a 230 gallon reef tank with 2 clowns, 1 wrasse, 1 damsel, 1 Bicolor Pseudochromis, 1 Bicolor Blenny, 1 Firefish, 1 Orange Shoulder Tang juvenile, 1 quite big Moorish Idol and 1 Naso Elegance tang (juvenile) Some hardy soft and hard corals along with some disk anemones and mushrooms. There is 130 lbs live rock in the tank (planning to get more next month). Tunze Turbelle Stream 8000 l/h powerhead (with air), Tunze 3130/2 skimmer, 36W UVC. I have this tank for 4 month now. I had  much smaller fish only tank before (for 1 year). SG 1.023, temp 26C, Ammonia 0, Nitrites 0, Nitrates about 10, PH 8.3, KH 11.3, Ca 480 - all parameters seems to be fine. There is no "electricity" in the tank since I bought "grounded" pump and skimmer. The problem is with my Naso Tang. I've got him 4 days ago, along with Orange Shoulder tang (I waited 4 mount for the tank stabilizes). I did a 1,5 hour acclimatization for the new arrival with lights off until next morning and the next day both fishes was extremely happy with no signs of stress at all! They eat everything I gave to them - frozen brine shrimp, Mysis, Spirulina, sushi Nori, even broccoli! <Always a great sign! But I didn't see the word "quarantine" mentioned there...You really should quarantine all new arrivals- particularly tangs.> So I relaxed a little bit, thinking I gave them a good start in the new tank.  Other fishes were very interested but not aggressive to the new tangs. Both new tangs were very active, they swam along together, picking food and rocks. However the day after my Naso tang showed completely different behavior. First it was hiding then later it came out and I noticed that he swims very strange - like he continues sleeping! He was swimming very "passive" like fish do in the night in the stream, "freezing" in one point. He showed absolutely no signs of interest to food the hole day - it was very strange to me because the other tang was even more happy and hungry than the day before! <Not a good sign...> My Naso didn't eat for 2 days now and became very thin. He is doing this strange swimming the hole day and that's all! He ignores food and other fishes. I'm really concerned about him because it looks not good and I just can not lose him! I noticed that the same day he change his behavior one of my two starfishes (Linckia sp.) seems to be bitten. May be he tried it and poisoned himself with it's tissue? <Unlikely, but I suppose that it's within the realm of possibility...> There is now signs of internal/external infection or parasites... The other fish are fine and doesn't show any signs of aggression to him die to his size. I did read FAQ about Naso tangs found they can refuse food and so on. But I didn't found anything about this strange "sleeping" during the day. Is it en internal infection symptom or something else? I just have no idea what's wrong with him! What I suppose to do with my tang before it's too late? What else should I check? Please, help! Hope for a quick answer Mikael from Sweden <Well, Mikael- I agree that this is not normal behavior for this fish. It's never good to see a fish refuse food or act listlessly. The absence of external symptoms does not mean that the fish isn't ill, but it is something to be concerned about. These fishes do have difficulty adapting to new environments, although your tank sounds like the parameters are pretty good. If the fish continues to refuse food and continues to act listlessly, then you may want to consider removing the fish to a separate tank for further observation. If other symptoms manifest themselves (like obvious spots or sores on his body), then appropriate medical intervention is warranted. On the other hand, if the fish is simply listless and refusing to eat, then I'd do what I could to tempt him to eat again. Fresh macroalgae, such as Gracilaria, is an excellent supplemental food. In the confines of a separate aquarium, you could also administer some aquarium vitamins directly to the water (remember- marine fishes do drink) in the hope that he will obtain some nutrition in that manner. Provide a stable, clean environment and a large variety of nutritious food items, and hopefully he will come around and eat again. Don't give up on this fish. With a little extra care and attention, he can pull through this difficult time and thrive. Good luck! Regards, Scott F.>
Tang In Trouble (Pt. 2)
Good morning! <Hello again!> I would like to thank you for the immediate reply. <Glad to be of assistance!> Things are not going better with my Naso tang today. I took a closer look on  him and he looks fine! Except he is very thin but there are no spots or scratches on his body. His breathing is ok and mouth and lips look good. <Glad to hear that!> Anyway I guess it can be some kind of internal infection or just stress (I hope!). He is still not eating. <Remain optimistic...> I will continue observations and offer him foods. To add some vitamins in  the water is a very good idea! <It might just keep him going until he comes around and starts eating again...> While things are not going worse there is a hope! Thank you, Mikael P.S. I know that quarantine is a most important thing to prevent diseases. But I've got fishes from a very trustful shop. Those guys are really concerned about animals they sale and they are professionals in this. They do quarantine right in the shop (10-14 days in separate tanks with UVC and so on). You can look and book the fish during this period but you can buy it only when quarantine will be done and only if the fish looks good and eats well after it... So I skip quarantine when I buy fish from them. <Wow! That's my kind of shop! Good to hear that! Still, do always remain skeptical and vigilant when purchasing new fishes! I hop to hear more good news from you on the Tang soon! Regards, Scott F.> Thank you. Mikael
Tang In Trouble (Pt.3)
Good morning! <Hi there!> You guys are doing a very good job here! Thanks for the second immediate reply! <Glad to be of assistance> Today my Naso feels not better. His breathing is quite far from being ok- about 160 lungs movements per minute! I guess that's it. It's not a stress, it's some kind of infection, isn't it? <So hard to tell without photos. I think that you'll need to look into the disease FAQs on the WWM site to make a positive determination as to what it is you're dealing with.> Poor buddy! What should I do now? I do have an extra tank to isolate him but the one problem is that he looks very weak and it will be just extra stress for him. And the main problem is to CATCH him! The tank is very big with a lot of rock in it. I spent 3 hours last time to catch my clown (but tangs are much better swimmers!). So can I perform something in the main tank now? Or should I try to remove him to an isolation tank anyway? Thank you, Mikael <Well, Mikael- this is a tough situation! The fish really needs to be removed to a separate tank for treatment. Treatment for a parasitic infection simply cannot be accomplished effectively in the display tank. Yes, there is a certain risk involved with catching and moving this fish to another tank, but it is definitely preferable to watching the fish die without intervention on your part! I'd try to catch him and get him into a separate tank for observation and/or treatment as required (if you suspect parasitic infection, formalin or copper-based medications are quite effective...). Regardless of the symptoms, do your best to make a diagnosis and proceed from there. Best of luck! Regards, Scott F.> Re: Naso Tang Ok, I will get a bigger tank, but how do I try to save him in between time. The yellow Naso tang is not eating.  What other types of food should I consider feeding him... any suggestions.<Nori, Lifeline, Caulerpa, other macro algae>  And are you saying I should only house 1 tang with a tank of the size I have?<probably yes>   Oh I have a rock and fish only tank sorry for the confusion. If I get a bigger tank will this prevent disease outbreaks in the future...any suggestions<possibly if you Qt before hand>  Janeiro <good luck, IanB>

Nasos, and other Tangs <HI, Mike D here> I started to write and the Email went away , I apologize if you got this twice. I was wondering if you could help,<I'll try> I am finally getting my dream system put in soon A 10' - 12 ' Aquarium.<Sounds beautiful!> I have a Large 8" Naso, 2 Regal Tangs (1-4" 1-1.5")<Here's one problem> 2 clowns , 1-Comet (Marine Betta) 1-Coral Beauty, These are presently in 210 6' Tank The Naso is Kind of mean, I thought they were suppose to be Mildly tempered.<NO! The word "Tang" refers to part of a knife, in reference to the blades found on the caudal peduncle or base of the tail. These are weapons that can be used to deadly effect on fish perceived as competitors or a threat!> She excepted the smaller Regal, and the coral beauty with no problem , I had 2 Copperbanded butterfly, Before I could get the poor fish out She had back the butterfly in a corner, Swatted her tail ant the butterfly and dang near sliced her in half, I never saw such a thing.<I have...use caution as they can do this to fingers too!> I was trying to net the butterfly out but I was too late. I have a 3rd 1." Regal but she was too tiny for this system and wasn't doing well. She's good now, these 2 smaller tangs were my rescue project. So far so good. When I get this new tank running. Is a Powder blue OK with the rest of the tangs.<NO!! Emphasis mine! Many tangs, and yours looks like a good example are one per tank. By Naso, I assume you're referring to Naso literates, which is a small member for this family of giants. The Powder Blue tang, by the way, although known as an "Ick magnet" when small, often grow up to be extremely belligerent adults!>> The Naso seems to be fine with other tangs, the all swim together, although I think From time to time the Regal can be a pain for the Naso,  The regal will swim with Anything that will swim with her.<I wouldn't be surprised to see the regal attack and kill the other regal eventually. My suggestion, since they are getting along so far is to NOT add another tang, and as you've already seen, if you decide to add an angelfish or such, try a smaller specimen and allow it to grow up in the tank. It's quite likely your tang will attack any other large fish you introduce.> Thank you in advance for your Help<You're welcome> Scott

Naso Tang Blowing In The Current? I have a question for the fish experts at WetWebMedia.  My Naso tang has been doing great for over 5 months in my 180 tank.  Recently he has begun to swim with a waggle, for lack of a better term and he will turn sideways and roll.   Rather than being quick and alert like he always has been, he is being blown around a little more by the current.  Should I be concerned or is there any actions / diagnosis you would recommend? <Good observation on your part. Although it may be nothing to worry about, the fact that this normally very strong fish is  displaying some signs of weakness, getting blown around in the current-is certainly a cause for some concern. If you are not seeing any other obvious external signs of illness, such as white spots, excessive mucus, rapid breathing, etc., then no further actions may be required except for continued good husbandry. On the other hands, if additional symptoms of disease manifest themselves, please feel free to let us know.> He is eating well - mostly seaweed selects green algae on a clip with some Selcon soaked in.  He now eats some of the Mysis and flake that I feed the rest of the tank (yellow tang, ocellaris clown, lawnmower blenny).  Could this be a nutritional issue?   <It is certainly possible. I'd try offering some fresh macroalgae, such as Gracilaria, which is en excellent supplement for tangs. You can get some at my favorite e-tailer, Indo Pacific Sea Farms. An excellent food for herbivorous tangs!> Until recently, he had no interest in anything I would feed except the algae on a clip.  The other fish are fine and the yellow tang is acting as usual.  The two tangs have always been a little scrappy but nothing to the point of injury. The only other abnormal thing that I can think of is that the Naso will sometimes have a circular lump in the stomach area after eating. <I would not be overly concerned about that at this point, unless the fish shows other difficulties...> Any insight you may have is appreciated. <At this stage of the game, I'd employ continued observation, frequent small water changes, regular feeding, and testing of water to assure that all is well. In short- keep doing what you're doing! Good luck! Regards, Scott F.>

Naso Tang with mouth problems dying We have had this Naso Tang in our 80 gallon tank for about five weeks. The tank has been established for about six years. It contains a protein skimmer, canister filter, bio filter, reverse-flow undergravel filter, & three powerheads. All water tests done have been fine. The Tang was eating until about a week ago, but at that time was only eating off the rocks and brine shrimp. He would not eat formula one or two, or Green Marine algae. He is now very thin, seems to breath normal but has some sort of white growth on his lips which may be why he quit eating. Can you tell by the picture what the mouth problem may be and if it can be treated?  I can't tell if the white is something hard or sloughing skin. We also have two brackish puffers, two percula clowns, a lawnmower blenny, three snails and a hermit crab in this tank and all of them are doing great. Thank You, Tina R <Does look something like what is often seen in Tetraodont puffers where their teeth, for want of chewing on hard materials, overgrow the mouth, prohibit feeding, and lead to wasting and concomitant disease. I actually suggest reading about and trimming this fish's teeth down... and quickly making this attempt. Please see www.WetWebMedia.com using the search terms "puffer teeth" on the home page Google Search Tool. Bob Fenner> p.s. I thought it may be Lymphocystis but had never dealt with this virus before. If in your opinion it is Lymphocystis, can it be treated since it is on his mouth or will he just die from not eating? <Doesn't appear to be lymph... but the animal's teeth themselves>

Naso In Trouble? Hi, <Hello there! Scott F. at your service> I am quarantining my first Naso Tang.  I've had him over a month and he seems to be doing OK.  Likes to eat Sargassum and spaghetti algae but hasn't really gotten into flake food or brine shrimp yet.  Very aware and curious of my presence, relaxed breathing and a decent belly.  <All good signs> I'd like to put him in the aquarium but I wanted to check with you first.  My only concern are these light blotches or patches on its skin.  To me the blotches seem to have always been there, not getting worse or better.  They aren't raised or fuzzy either. I've attached a photo.  Is this a normal discoloration related to the confines of a QT. Thanks, Justin <Well Justin- first off, I commend you on your use of quarantine! An excellent practice that will benefit you and your fishes for years to come! As far as the blotches, it's hard to say what they might be. If the fish appears otherwise healthy, eats well, and is not in any apparent discomfort, then I'd be inclined to release the fish on schedule. Could be anything from a genetic fault to a light trauma incurred by scraping himself against aquarium decor. If you maintain excellent water quality, and keep feeding this guy carefully, he should be just fine. Good luck! Regards, Scott F>

Naso tang life span What's the average life span of a Naso Tang once reaching full length ?
<In captivity I would say it would take around 5-10 years for the Naso to attain its full length. In the wild about half that, IanB>

Strange Naso Symptoms (3/26/04)   Just found your web site and found it extremely interesting regarding Nasos. I maintain aquariums for several businesses and have had a problem with Nasos. <Believe me, many do.> Seems after several months they get a series of pinprick spot on the sides mostly just below the top fin and behind the head. Looks like someone took a pin and gouged out a tiny spot.  They tend to be dark in color.  Also seem to have a few white protrusions (very small) here and there.  No idea if they are related to the same problem. The first fish finally died after months of this "stuff" slowly spreading to cover a fairly large area.  Treated with copper without any results. <Hopefully not in the display tanks.> Current fish has only 15 or 20 spots currently, eats well, acts normal and is in a 125 gallon aquarium.  Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.  Jon Bartnick <It's always hard to say without seeing. I'm wondering if this is HLLE. Do read up on it and look at some pix on WWM. The other option would seem to be some sort of parasite. If you have a fish die, it would be interesting to look at some lesions under a microscope to look for parasites. Check out the HLLE possibilities first. Hope this helps some. Steve Allen> Neo Naso Notes I just got a 3-4" Naso tang and he just got added into the tank after a 3 hour drip acclimation are there any tips you can give me for raising a healthy Naso?<Yea....you will need to feed this potentially huge fish a lot...believe me I have a 14" Naso Vlamingi and a 8" Naso Vlamingi....they eat A TON OF FOOD!!! Also you will need to house this fish in at least a 6 foot aquarium because they are open ocean swimming fish. Also make sure water quality is very good. IanB>

Naso Not so Good Hello <Hi, Ryan here> I have a Naso tang (lituratus) with streamers and he is not eating since a couple of days, I have checked water parameters and they are all fine (still did a water change) except the ph that was about 7.8 I raise it to 8.1over a two day period ,the thing is yesterday the fish had ate a little bit not as mush that normally eat!!!!( had not eat for two, tree days before that )and now today he stopped again and I notice that is lips are white (like a fungus or something covering the lips ) and he is staying on the top part of the tank all he other fish are fine and healthy and eating fine .????????? <Hi.  A change in pH from 7.8 to 8.1 can have negative effects on sensitive livestock.  I recommend you start to buffer your pH (sounds like you already are), and add something to stabilize your calcium and alkalinity.  B-Ionic is simple as pie.  As for feeding, I would try and offer some frozen Formula 2 and Nori.  The white lips you are describing is probably a sign of a bacterial infection.  Is this a new fish?  I would take him out, isolate him and treat with a Furazolidone and Nitrofurazone medication, and follow the directions to the T.  Good luck, Ryan> I am starting to freak out!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! don't want to loose that fish !!! how many time can they stay without eating ? Would like to have any help or advice you think might help Thanks

Naso Tang in Trouble pt. 2 Good morning, sorry to bother you but I searched your website and believe I found the disease affecting my Naso tang but not positive. <Hello, Ryan with you on the follow-up> On one email to question, you suggested it might be Turbellid worms. <Nasty business> I have had this Naso for about 3 weeks. <So he's still being quarantined?> Just in a few days did the dark spots appear all over its body. I've seen black ich and it didn't look like that at all.  The spots almost look as if they are under the skin. <Good perception> The Naso is nowhere near as aggressive as the other fish in the tank when it comes to eating. <I see he's in your display...Sadly, the others are also at risk, certainly because we're not sure what we're dealing with> He eats very little and only gets what falls to the bottom that other fish. <Nori?> I thought at first he was lethargic from not getting enough to eat but after the spots appeared, I knew it had to be some type of infection. <Certainly> I don't expect him to survive after looking at him this morning, he looked too weak to do any type of freshwater dip.  The other fish in the tank, small trigger, coral beauty, yellow tang and clownfish seem to be fine and are eating quite well.  <You need to get this fish in a quarantine tank- The other may die from this> What can I do to keep the other fish from getting it? <See above> He was the only one acting strange no other marks on any of the other fish. <Don't get comfortable yet> They are all eating quite well and active.  I did treat the tank this morning w/ Greenex just so the yellow tang and others would not stress and get ich. <I would refrain from medicating your display tank, and only medicate in quarantine.  Why force fish to undergo medication when they're healthy?  Medicate the sick, leave the healthy ones alone> What should I do? <See above> Don't want to lose the other fish but as I said they all seem fine now. Does raising the temperature of the tank help kill parasites? <Yes, but you'll kill your fish before the parasites.  Leave the tank temperature constant.  Healthy immune systems is the best defense for your fish at this point- Healthy fish are well fed, active and live in a stable environment.> Should I treat the tank with medication to prevent the worms if indeed that is what it is from spreading to the other fish. <Treat in quarantine> As I said, I've seen numerous diseases and never have seen this before other than on a previous Naso tang. <Yes, many nasty things can gain entry into a host during the stresses of shipping.  For this reason, it's important to... I don't think I need to repeat it again!  ;)  Good luck, and remember that these situations are caused by rushing.  Take your time, do it right, and enjoy yourself.  Ryan>

Naso Tangs in a four foot aquarium is a NO NO Hello I currently have a 110g reef that I will be upgrading this summer to a 150 or 180 if my floors can handle the weight. I currently have a white cheek tang and will be adding a yellow tang after his quarantine period is over.  Can I keep a Naso tang as well?  If not what are some other tangs I could house with these 2 guys?<None>   I have close to 200lbs of LR so there are a decent amount of cave and hiding sports. <Naso tangs do not need live rock, In the wild they inhabit open water. They need swimming room and a four foot aquarium will most definitely not be enough, IanB> Thanks Chris Look before you leap...please research before (!) you buy! 2/17/04 Hey there, <howdy> I have to tell you, I love this site. There is an almost unlimited amount of information here and I've definitely put it to use. <good to hear> I do have one question though.  I bought this tang at the LFS for $14 but the catch was they didn't know what it was. There invoice had it listed as assorted tangs. And I've been all over the web looking for a positive id with no luck, please help. Scott Ballantyne 125 g reef <Scott... this story may very well have a sad ending. You have your work cut out for you if nothing else. This is exactly why one should research an animal before they buy it. Your fish is a Vlamingi Naso (juvenile) and reaches 2 feet long as an adult. Some people feel that this fish should not even be imported for private aquarium use. Even if it only gets half of its adult size in time... your 125 gallon aquarium is cramped if not cruel in my opinion as housing for it. I see you state that you've been all over the net looking, but I must say... where? From our site or most any other archive/database you can see that your tang's body shape is unique to the Naso genus. Our archives are filled with advice and occasional pleads with aquarists to use fishbase.org as a research tool to browse for fish IDs. There you will find the following info: http://www.fishbase.org/Summary/SpeciesSummary.cfm?ID=6024&genusname=Naso&speciesname=vlamingii juv pic: http://www.fishbase.org/Photos/PicturesSummary.cfm?StartRow=5&ID=6024&what=species please do be more resourceful and thorough in your searches and above all... do not buy any animal that you do not know how to feed, house or even name. My advice is to see if you can find a better home for this fish (300 gallon plus) in the next year to spare it from stunting or dying prematurely. To you/our future success. Anthony>

Look before you leap...please research before you buy II 2/17/04 Thanks for the quick response.  (Anthony) I feel the need to defend my self though. <no offence intended... but it is what it is. A fish purchased without a name or any concept of adult size/needs> I'm usually very cautious with what I put in my tanks. And I know what the feeding requirements for all my fish are. <very good to hear> I have mostly tangs in the tank. <Ughhh! Mostly tangs?! Not good to hear. Assuming you have one than one of the likely following: Sailfin, blue hepatus, another Naso species like lipstick/lituratus, etc... then you have what is or will be a crowded tank and no proper regard for the cumulative adult sizes of these fishes. Its simply not true that fishes grow to their tanks size. The "wait and see" or "ill get a bigger tank later" approach always ends up abbreviating the life of such crowded fishes. Yet aquarists commonly disregard this because a fish that will grow to 2 feet long but only grows to 6" and dies at 5 years old seems like success. The truth of the matter is that the fish should have lived well over 10 years (actually.... many are on record over 30 yrs old... see the Nancy or Shedd Aquarium longevity records, for example) and I have personally seen a P. hepatus blue tang 26 years old! These fishes can/do stunt and die prematurely> Also I did look at the Vlamingi as a possible match to my fish but I could never find a picture of one that looked like mine. <Hmmm... do use fishbase.org in the future> The other possible match I found on a online retailer (saltwaterfish.com) they had a Lopezi that looked close too. <understood... yet you did recognize it as a Naso, my friend... and any fish atlas or website will show you that the adult size of the majority of Naso species is still 60-100 cm (24 - 40' long) and the few species that are only 12-16" as adults clearly do not look like your  Vlamingi. I'm sorry if this offends you, but frankly... ask yourself if in part you are not defensive for making the wrong/impulsive call? Case in point... you didn't feel the need to share with me that you thought it might be a Lopezi or Vlamingi in your first e-mail.. but you were sure to mention it was only $14. That was an impulse purchase and it now affects the quality of this fishes life and your response to my chagrin over your choice> Then I recently moved , so I had the LFS hold my fish till I could set up the tank and the owner thought it was a Blue spot tang and I cant find any thing but Lopezi under that name. But I am trying really hard to keep the animals I have. <I'm grateful for it... and realize that your response here is out of concern> And at any point I feel that he/she is unhappy I can trade with my buddy at the LFS he has two 300+ gal displays that I'm sure could accommodate. <you cannot gage "happiness" in any fish any more than you can gage developmental (growth) anomalies that will lead to premature death in an improperly stocked aquarium. If the fish is under 7" long in 2-3 years, then it will not see even half of its potential natural lifespan IMO. I'm not trying to irritate you, Scott... but I am disheartened and frankly a bit miffed myself to see aquarists that should know better forget that these are living creatures. For perspective, do us both a favor before you write in next and visit fishbase.org... a bonafide accurate reference... and add up the cumulative potential adult sizes of the fish in your tank... then even cut that number in half, and ask yourself if you'd keep say 3 foot long puppy dog in a 6 foot long cage for life? The ASPCA would not allow it if your sense of ethics did. And so... a blue tang (31 cm), Naso lituratus (45 cm) and Sailfin tang (40cm) added to this Vlamingi now (60 cm) total of 35" of fish at only half-grown/potential. And that's not even counting the yellow tang, etc you have ;) And these fishes have longer swimming ranges than dogs run. They need room to grow and swim dude. This is all about being a conscientious aquarist all the time... even when pretty fish are only $14> Thank you so much for your time, Scott Ballantyne <and I appreciate your concern to reply. You are not the first person to have this conversation with me or others here on the WWM crew. View the FAQs in the archives on this subject and you will see other responses and positions from folks that have made the mistake you have. Lets live and learn. To every day, a better way. Anthony>

- White Spots on Naso Tang - Hi Crew, I have a 3"-4" Blonde Naso Tang with small white specks surrounding the perimeter of both pectoral fins and a white tuft (approx 3/16" long) attached to the lower, rear anal fin.  I have tried to take pictures of this but I have been unable to produce any that show the problem. There is not a single (visible) spot of Cryptocaryon on the fish's body. It did have a mild case of crypto and refused to eat for the first four days after it arrived about 1 1/2 weeks ago so I began treating with CLOUT for two days, followed by CopperSafe since that time. The Royal Gramma that is in the QT with the Naso developed a case of fin and tail rot so I also treated the tank with Maracyn 2 and Melafix.  All fins on both fish are completely clear and perfectly healed now.  I gave the Naso an 8 minute freshwater dip four days ago, in an attempt to rid it of these few white specks, but this had no effect.  The tang is eating very well now and, other than these few white specks on the fin edges, it appears to be perfectly healthy.  The white spots are very pronounced though.  They are approximately the size of a grain of salt (except for the white mass / tuft on the anal fin) and they appear to be lightly sitting on top of the fin edge. I know the white salt grain-sized specs sounds like Cryptocaryon but I have maintained a constant 2.0 PPM level of Cu++ (chelated CopperSafe) in this QT for nearly 1 1/2 weeks now, followed by freshwater dips.  I have also examined this fish very closely and there are absolutely no other white spots except for these isolated few at the very outer edges of the pectoral fins so this is making me think this fish has something other than crypto. Any ideas? <It's probably just residual marking from the Cryptocaryon. Given the level of copper and the fact that the fish is otherwise eating and doing well, I'd let it continue in quarantine... always keeping an eye on things, make sure those spots don't turn into something else, get infected, etc.> Water parameters: Salinity = 1.022, Temp = 82 Deg. F, Ammonia = 0 PPM, Nitrites = 0 PPM, Nitrates = 20 PPM, 2.0 PPM Cu++, weekly 25% water changes. Your help is greatly appreciated! --Greg <Cheers, J -- >

- Shoe-horn Quarantine - Greetings Crew, I really hope you can help me to keep a Naso Tang alive.  I currently have a 3.5" (mouth to tail) Blonde Naso Tang that is frightened of absolutely everything.  His gills and fins begin to flap like a hummingbird's wings any time I get near his tank, turn the lights on or off or anything inside or near his tank moves.  He turns nearly black in color, with white spots.  There are times when gilling is normal and he regains normal coloration but I must remain completely still for several minutes to see this. What really has me concerned is his lack of appetite.  I have had this Naso for three days now and I have still not seen it eat.  This is my third Naso and all three have suffered the same symptom of not eating.  Although the first two Naso Tangs died, I have had very good success with all my other fish so I had hoped I just happened upon two unhealthy fish previously and this one would live a long life.  The only difference with this fish is that it does appear to have eaten at some point before I received it.  The previous two Nasos were very thin (concave, in fact) but this one is more rounded - "full-bodied". This Naso is currently in a 20 gallon QT with a 2" Purple Tang. <You should separate these fish - not a good size for two tangs.> I have not noticed any aggression (they were added at the same time). <Still... to close a quarters.> For the first day I also had a flame angel and a tiny clown goby in this tank as well but I have since moved them to my 55 gallon QT. <I would do this the other way around with the clown and goby in the smaller quarantine and the larger fish in the 55 - even better would be to have the Naso in there by itself.> Ammonia and Nitrite is at 0 PPM, Nitrate = 20 PPM, salinity = 1.023 SG and temp = 79 Degrees F.  I perform ~20% water changes every third day (using water from my 180 gallon main tank).  The tangs showed signs of Cryptocaryon so I medicated with CLOUT for three days, until all white spots were gone.  I am not using copper at this time because I used this on the previous Nasos and thought this might have played a part in their lack of appetite as I have read that some tangs are sensitive to copper. <Perhaps.> I have tried feeding Formula 2, Nori, Spectrum pellets, flake food, chopped silversides (Selcon-soaked), Zooplankton and even brine shrimp (Selcon soaked) but the Naso has shown no interest in any of these.  The purple tang seems to like all of these.  What else could I try? <I'd stick with the algae and other green foods - what you might want to try is thaw out some frozen formula two and then press that into a chunk of live rock and re-freeze. When it's feeding time, thaw out a little bit and place in the tank. This should allow the fish to duplicate its natural feeding behaviour which is picking at algae on rocks. Again, I'd remove the second tang from this tank so there is no competition for this food.> Is there any "irresistible" fish food? <Not that I can think of other than live algae growing on live rock - this is what they eat in the wild.> I QT all new fish for 4 weeks (or 4 weeks after the last signs of ich).  I use the drip method to acclimate fish over about a 45 minute period.  I feed any existing fish in the tank before adding new fish and I leave the lights off for at least four hours after adding new fish to the QT.  There are two cave-shaped pieces of live rock in the QT for hiding.  I try to remain out of sight of the tank except for feeding for the first day or two, until the fish get accustomed to their new surroundings.  What else could I do to make the transition easier for this fish? <Remove that second tang.> What could I possibly do to get the Naso to eat? <Have detailed my ideas... can't think of much else.> Are Naso Tangs of this size just not hardy, do you see any issues with my husbandry or do you think I just had a very bad coincidence (3 very sick Nasos - 1 from my LFS and two from an online store)? <Combination of factors - capture and transport is very stressful, and this usually takes weeks to come down from.> I have considered moving the Purple Tang to the 55 gallon QT but this larger QT contains a 6" Powder Blue Tang, a porcupine puffer, a flame angel, 3 ocellaris clowns, a Longnose B/F, a Royal Gramma, a Lawnmower Blenny and a Clown Goby. <My friend, you have too many fish in this quarantine. You really need to be dealing with and then placing one fish at a time. Additionally, you have too many tangs... you're going to have problems in the long run with this mix.> I think the Purple Tang would probably hold its own with the Powder Blue but the 55 gallon QT is already a bit crowded and I also thought the Naso might be encouraged to eat by watching the Purple Tang. <I think you're overcrowding your quarantine.> What are your thoughts regarding what I should do - move fish? <Slow down - one fish at a time.> different foods? medication? fish shiatsu? buy a larger Naso Tang that is eating at the LFS instead of taking the risk on smaller fish? <None of the above - you need to adjust your behaviours. The fish are just reacting to the situations you are putting them into.> Any suggestions are greatly appreciated, as I do not want to be unintentionally harming this fish or wasting money on a type of fish that is "impossible" to keep. I did not think Naso Tangs were supposed to be delicate fish. <They typically aren't.> Are Blonde Nasos more/less hardy than those that are not from the Red Sea? <Not that I'm aware of.> -- Greg <Cheers, J -- >

Removing the tangs from a Tang I've heard that this is sometimes done by collectors seeking to make the Tangs easier to handle. <Yes, especially larger specimens... on collecting are "clipped" to reduce/eliminate chance of injury to diver, other specimens> I just received a Naso from Saltwaterfish.com whose tangs are not there.  What is the long-term impact of this?  I'm really disappointed!  It seems wrong to take away their primary form of defense.  It's akin to declawing a cat and then expecting it to acclimate well to an environment in which it will have to engage in the process of establishing a pecking order. <No long-term problem should arise from this practice. The "tangs" do grow back... in a few months time>   This fish does not seem terribly healthy, either.  He's not eating at all despite being offered many tempting treats.  (Lettuce, Nori, brine shrimp, formula one) Any recommendations? <To refer to the family coverage on WWM re the feeding of Acanthurids, the genus Naso in general. Bob Fenner> Ana M. Saavedra

- Problems with New Naso Arrival - Hi WWM Crew, Two days ago I received a 2.5" Blonde Naso Tang along with a few other fish from an online fish store.  All fish are doing very well in my quarantine tank -- except for the Naso.  The first day in the QT it lightly picked at a piece of live rock but there is really not much life on this rock to sustain it.  Since the first day, I have not noticed this fish eating anything.  It appears thin to me, except for a slight bulge in its stomach. I had a similar problem with my last Naso Tang so I might just be overly-sensitive this time.  My last Naso was about the same size and I watched it waste away without eating for nearly three weeks before it finally died.  From what I have read on WWM and elsewhere, my best guess is that it possibly had some type of worms.  This Naso is presenting nearly identical to the last one; it has no signs of external parasites, no wounds, clear eyes and appears completely well in every way except for not eating (and sometimes being dark brown / gray in color).  I tried using Cravex (vitamin B12), a variety of foods, regular water changes and Paragon II with the last Naso.  None of this had any effect.  I am using Cravex with the current Naso and trying Formula 1 pellets, self-made food with Selcon (my other fish devour), Nori, Zooplankton and even brine shrimp (anything just to get it started eating).  So far, I have not seen this fish eat. What do you suggest to entice this fish to eat? <You might try a trick taught to me by Anthony Calfo... seems to work pretty well with fish that pick. Take small pieces of live rock, preferably something that has some surface texture but not sharp. Using the Formula 2, thaw it out and press the food into the surface of the rock and then refreeze. Thaw slightly at feeding time and place in the tank. With some luck, this will allow for something close to their natural feeding habits, and it will clean off the rock. If the fish does start to eat this way, do put other foods in through the top at the same time so it will [hopefully] begin to associate the two.> It is currently in a 55 gal QT with a 5" Powder Blue Tang (no aggression issues so far), 3 Ocellaris Clowns, a Royal Gramma, a Long-nose B/F and a Lawnmower Blenny.  All fish appear to be very mild mannered.  Ammonia and Nitrites are zero, Nitrates are 10 PPM, Salinity = 1.0235 SG, Temp = 77 Degrees F.  I am now considering moving this Naso to a 20 gallon QT and possibly trying to medicate using Clout as a kind of catch-all. <Hmm...> I do not want to just medicate indiscriminately but I also cannot stand to just watch another Naso Tang waste away. <Understood.> Please provide some suggestions. <I would hold off on treatments for the moment - do understand your desire to help this fish turn the corner, but think that the best way to do this 'right now' is to reduce stress as much as possible, and I think removal to another tank, treatment, et al. will exacerbate your problems. Try the feeding rock first... if that doesn't work, you might try more drastic action but I don't see a good end to it.> Now, following-up on a previous question -- I had asked about using Cu as a standard practice in a QT for all arrivals since I recently purchased a Purple Tang that showed no signs of parasites for the first day in the QT but looked like it had been sugar-coated on the second day.  My concern is that new fish could be carriers of Cryptocaryon and have no indication of this for the entire quarantine period, only to bring the crypto into the main tank once moved. <Nine times out of ten, they will present these issues in quarantine. Most all parasitic issues are cyclic so that at some point in the two to four weeks the problems, if there are going to be any, will show up. Copper, especially with tangs can cause more problems that it's worth, so it's my opinion that it's better to hold off.> Again, I prefer to not medicate without a specific reason for doing so but, since crypto can be so elusive, my question is: "Are the potential risks associated with consistent QT use of Cu outweighed by the benefits of (nearly) guaranteeing parasite-free fish being introduced into the main aquarium?" <Varies on a case by case basis methinks. Copper, formalin, all these are toxic/poisonous in the right concentration so that you really should avoid them unless symptoms dictate the need.> Thank you for the help.  I am looking forward to your response on the Naso so I can hopefully begin to do something to turn-around its appetite soon. --Greg <Cheers, J -- >

- Problems with New Naso, Follow-up - Thank you for the suggestion to try to get my Naso Tang eating. <My pleasure.> Unfortunately, it is no longer even picking at rock so I think it might be too late for even this option to work. <Well... it may be convinced there is nothing there to pick at.> I will try this along with regular water changes to maintain top water quality and hope for the best. <I think this is your best bet.> I did read a few suggestions about taking fish to a vet and having them tube fed. I honestly think this is probably the only chance for this tang now but there are no such vets in my area.  I have pipettes that would fit in the tang's mouth but it seems to me that this would cause more stress to the fish than most anything imaginable and could just push it over the edge. What do you think -- is it worth a try at this point? <The tube feeding? I agree with your premise that this will be too much stress on an already stressed fish.> Regarding the QT and medication, I will leave all the fish in this tank un-medicated for four weeks and hope they are not parasite carriers.  I did read that all fish are carriers of Cryptocaryon but it just remains dormant until a time of stress. <I don't agree with that - Cryptocaryon can't go dormant forever or until convenient, and if you don't think capture and transport isn't stressful, then I don't know what is.>  If this is the case, it does appear that I could be risking the fish in my main tank though and I do not have room to keep my main tank fallow for an extended period. <Quarantine will truly reduce these risks. If the fish is carrying parasites, 99.9% of the time they WILL be expressed upon arrival, whether in your main tank or in quarantine.> Once I eventually reach the final stocking capacity of my main tank and no longer need such a large QT, I would like to convert my QT to another display tank.  (I can't decide whether I want a reef or triggers, puffers and angels so this would allow me to have both setups).  My concern is that many people say copper can NEVER be completely eliminated from an aquarium once it has been used. <I've heard this too and feel that tanks are cheap enough that it's better to be safe than sorry - just keep it around as a quarantine or for emergency use.> A few other people have told me that use of a poly filter over an extended period of time will eventually eliminate nearly all traces of copper. <From the water... not necessarily the silicone.> If I do need to use copper in my QT, will I ever be able to use this tank for a reef (assuming I remove all existing sand and rock)? <Again, not a risk that I personally would be willing to take.> I cannot image how glass or silicone could absorb any significant quantity of copper. <Hmm... well I managed to turn all the silicone blue in my quarantine tank, so it's obviously absorbing something.> Even if they did absorb some amount of copper, the amounts that would be slowly released would be diluted in 55 gallons of untreated water. It seems to me that this small release rate (if any) would be more than offset by normal water changes.  Am I wrong? <I'm not sure you're wrong and I'm not sure you're right either. Personally, I just like to be cautious. I say try it... if you can't keep any invertebrates alive, then you'll know the answer.> --Greg <Cheers, J -- >

Naso Tangs Hello Bob, <Hello Sanjay> I'm unsure if you remember, but approx 3 months ago I wrote to you regarding Naso tangs and intestinal worms. My plan was to investigate intestinal worms in Naso tangs as a reason for their decline in captivity. <Interesting possibility> I purchased a healthy six inch Naso and introduced it to my QT system.  It settled in well and after a week or so I began my experiment.   To half a cube of frozen food I added approx 20mg of an anti-thelmic preparation called Mebendazole.  I obtained the liquid form which sticks to frozen food. I fed this twice a day for two days without any ill effects to the Naso.  However I did not see any worms. <Have you taken a look to and through the scientific literature on issues involving such worms and Surgeonfishes?> On the third day, hey presto, hundreds of tiny round worms (confirmed by the local vet) about 1 cm in length.  Nasty looking organisms might I add. <Have any pix?> The QT tank had a little live rock, which proved to be a great mistake.  Many worms sought refuge in this rock.  At the same time the anti-thelmic agent seemed to dislodge the worms, but did not kill them.  I tried to remove as many as I could.   The tang re-ingested the worms and began to decline in the same manner as my previous Naso did in my main system. The Naso became increasingly thin over a few days. Eventually the tang died from what I suspect to be an over load of worms. I decided to discard the live rock, but as I was about to do so, I spotted a very large round worm about half an inch thick and six inches in length. My conclusion from the above may provide a reason for why Naso tangs decline for no apparent reason in captivity. <One hypothesis... how will or might you go about devising experiments to prove, disprove it?> I am not repeating this exercise as I do not want to be responsible for another Naso death. However I believe that importers of these beautiful creatures may find my studies interesting and take on the responsibility of de-worming these fish before they are passed on to retailers, (in an  Ideal world). <... better to have a larger sample size... and more "cures" folks can attempt> I also conclude that those who read this post and decide to de-worm a fish in QT,  must do so with either a more effective anti-thelmic drug or a greater concentration of Mebendazole.  Ensuring the tank is devoid of live rock is also essential. <Okay> Hope this has been of interest to you, thanks in advance for taking an interest. Regards Sanjay Patel <And thank you for writing. Bob Fenner>

Tang and butterfly hi guys, I have a lipstick tang that is not eating, a day before this happened my Heni B/F died...and I observed that they get along (weird and funny) the tang will always stick around with the Butterflyfish... does this make sense? Is this because of the death of my Heni B/F (psychological)...? will my tang eat again?<he should eat again, I would check your water quality. normally fish don't "just die" there is a cause of death. Good luck, IanB>

Naso tang in shock I acclimated my new Naso tang this morning.  Since he has been released into my system he has remained in shock (lying on the bottom, breathing rapidly, moving his side fins and keeping his dorsal fin erect). <Signs of anoxia, a lack of oxygen>   He has moved a few inches here and there but is otherwise looking pretty pathetic.  Is there anything that I can do to help?  Does his actions mean inevitable death? <Add aeration ASAP. An airstone/mechanical diffuser, air intakes on your powerheads...> The other fish that were acclimated were 2 Heniochus, flame hawk, anemone and a coral banded shrimp...all are doing extremely well.  Lights are still off.  Any suggestions or valuable insights? Carrie <Naso genus tangs are active, large animals that require high, consistent levels of dissolved oxygen... and as part of this, plenty of room to swim, have for gaseous exchange. And yes, best to leave the lights off for now. Bob Fenner>

Naso Nasties.. (Injury or Illness?) Ok- finally about 3 days ago some signs showed up on my Naso... I've never seen this before but I'm sure you all have. It looks like someone just got a knife and scrapped off some of his skin like where his Gills open and close. On both sides. Its weird, kind of brownish blackish but you have to look closely to see this. From far it just looks grey like the rest of his body. He still eats and nips at the rocks. Oh- and He finally is not at the top of the water surface in a corner. He came down about 6 days ago and hasn't gone back since. Now his behavior is a little more normal, except that he scratches his gills a lot on the live rock now. <Well, it sounds like there may have been some kind of traumatic injury, which perhaps became infected?> I must also tell you that I added CopperSafe last Saturday. I'm pretty sure this is the cause for getting rid of whatever he had they kept him in that corner but I don't know what this stuff around the gills is? IT LOOKS LIKE A BURN? Like if the CopperSafe burned his gills ( I know that's prob. stupid) but that what it looks like. <Well, that's not that far fetched, actually...Improperly administered, copper can actually cause damage to fishes...Important to test regularly when you're using copper...I guess that you'll really just have to keep an eye on this fish, to make sure that he appears to be healing properly. Hard to say exactly what happened, so just observe and be prepared to take action if things take a turn for the worse.> I took your advice and ordered an AquaC Remora and had it overnighted to me. YOU WONT BELIEVE WHAT THAT THING DID FOR ME. In less the 24 hours the collection cup was full with DISGUSTING brown and green gunk and my water was like 75% clearer. <That's what I'm talking' about, man! Not bad, those Aqua C skimmers, huh? Jason Kim (Aqua C owner) knows his stuff! That's why we consistently recommend this brand...> I have never seen a skimmer do what this one does. Well please advise me on what action I can take to help my Naso, if any. Thanks again for all your help. <Again, the best course of action I can offer at this point is to keep a close eye on this guy...Keep the water extremely clean, and the environment stable, and feed the fish high quality food often...Hang in there. Regards, Scott F>

Nasos and mandarins and skimmers, oh my! Hey guys, need your help. I have a 46 gallon bow front with fish and live rock. It's been running since November of 2002. I've had 3 damsels in there since around Jan. and have added an ocellaris in late Jan., a Mandarin in Feb. <Unless the mandarin is eating prepared foods, your tank is much too small to sustain one, and it better be full of live rock crawling with 'pods!>  and my most recent purchase, A NASO TANG. I know it will get too big for my tank but I plan on getting something much bigger in about a year or so. <Hopefully the Naso won't beat you to it. If it's small, they grow very fast, the idea here is buy for what you have, not for what you will have.> My main question today is about my tang. He's only been in my tank for about 4 days now and he has been doing fine, eating and swimming around. He likes to pick at my Live rock a lot which to me is a good sign of a healthy tang. I did not quarantine him because I do not buy any fish from the pet store without knowing they have been there for 3 weeks AT LEAST already. <It's still an excellent idea to quarantine, catching and transport is enough stress to make all kinds of lovely things rear their ugly heads.>  So just today I noticed he's been hanging around the surface of the water in a corner. When I feed he comes down quickly to eat then he swims around for a while nips at the rocks then goes back up there. He has know indication of disease yet other than his behavior. NO SPOTS, NO CLOUDY EYE, NO marks of any kind. I KNOW SOMETHING is wrong because sometimes when he is swimming I'll see him shake usually just to one side. <If you are certain that the fish is not getting picked on by the clown (they get territorial), check to see if it is having trouble staying down, like it was buoyant, which would indicate a swim-bladder problem.> kind of has sporadic swimming motions. IS THIS THE EARLY DEVELOPMENT OF ICH? <Probably not, but who knows?!> I cannot afford to purchase a quarantine and the other problem is that my Mom really would have a heart attack if I had ANOTHER tank in my room lol. <A quarantine tank can be just a cheap 10g freshwater setup from the local pet shop and you could place it inside the aquarium stand.> What can I do? Should I just wait a while longer before taking any action? I seen fish getting better many times on their own. What medication is best? <We only medicate if we know what the problem is, for now just watch it and keep it well fed. Also, check your ammonia, pH, and nitrite levels.> Also I need your advice on filtration. Now I previously owned a 75 gallon tank with wet/dry and skimmer. MY current tank was going in my room so I needed something smaller (46 Gal Bow) but I'm concerned about using proper filtration. I am using an EMPEROR 400 alone, NO SKIMMER. <Should be fine as long as you keep the tank understocked.> I never got the skimmer because I figured the tank was too small to really need a skimmer. <Ah, they're never too small!>  Now that I have fish in it, should I make the investment in the skimmer? <If you've got some extra cash, otherwise don't worry about it.> My water is crystal clear without it. I've been looking into the PRIZM PRO DELUXE because its a hang on and REQUIRES VERY LITTLE SPACE in the TANK itself Just the Inlet to suck the water), WHAT SKIMMER DO U RECOMMEND? Do I need the $200 Prizm pro of will the $80 Prizm do the same? <They won't do the same, the pro definitely performs much better than the original. Instead of either one, you'd be much better off with either an AquaC remora, remora pro, or a Precision Marine HOT-1, as the Prizms are of low quality, noisy, and inefficient compared to the aforesaid models. -Kevin> THANKS IN ADVANCE FOR YOUR HELP!!!! HOMER

Naso tang Hello, I recently added a lipstick tang to a 100 gallon tank..<did you quarantine this fish for 3-4 weeks>  All usual tests were fine... the tank houses 2 Percula clowns and two blue damsels who are all fine. <ok>   After about five hours in the tank the tang simply wanted to rest on the bottom and not move. <usually they rest on the bottom when first introduced>  After about twelve hours he was on his side..<did you acclimate him properly?> Still alive but not wanting to move.  If prompted by the movement of a fish near by he would swim around a bit but always return to somewhere on the bottom.  He died in about 24 hours from being introduced into the tank.<That is why it is good to quarantine fish before introduction to the main system>  The tang had been at the shop for at least two weeks and was very healthy looking. swimming great and eating fine. Any idea what I did wrong? <could be how you acclimated it, but from now on I would quarantine all fish for 3-4 weeks before introduction>  One suggestion was that my oxygen content was too low.  I purchased a test kit today and measured between five and seven (which does seem low by some reckonings.)<well these free open swimming tangs require high levels of dissolved oxygen>  Could this have effected a larger fish in this way, but still have supported the smaller damsels? <yes, it could have> I feel very guilty for losing such a fine fish, and would like to establish what I did wrong before trying another one. <good idea> The tank contains only fish and has been established for 3 months.  I use natural seawater (live on an island)<would use pre-mixed salt-such as instant ocean.. etc> and maintain gravity at 1.022. I regularly change 10% water and add stress Zyme in proportion to these changes.  Temperature is about 79 deg.  I also did a copper test today, which reported nothing present.<well look over WWM and make sure to quarantine all fish before introduction to your main aquarium, I have enclosed a link for you to look over...should help http://www.wetwebmedia.com/naso.htm> Many thanks<IanB> Brendan Bougourd.

Sick Naso Hello, I couldn't find anything particular to these symptoms so any advice as to how to treat this guy would be much appreciated. 5" Naso tang, had him for 5-6mo, very happy usually - suddenly stopped eating & swimming around everywhere.  I can't see a thing wrong with him other than his stomach is thin now from not eating I guess.  All other fish in tank are perfectly healthy.  He looks kind of dazed, scared.  I do have a quarantine area if needed, should I move him and what could it be, what medication would help do you think? Thanks a lot...  <I wouldn't move him as it would stress him out more.  Check your water parameters, one of these are likely amiss.  What size is the tank he is in?  You could try feeding him some dried Nori on a clip and see if he will eat that.  Cody>

Rock and Nasos >Hello fellas, Hey!  There are a couple of gals here, too.  ;)  Marina is the lady of choice today.   >Got a couple of questions for you today.  Quick ones too so I don't take too much of your time.  First, how much rock can an aquarium within reason hold without compromising the structure of the tank?  I have a 72gal bow front that at the moment has around 130lbs of live rock.  How much will cause the tank to be in danger or cause leaks?  >>Boy, good question.  The tank can *easily* hold 2-3lbs. of rock/substrate/gallon without problems.  Truthfully, to the best of my knowledge there's little that we can put in our tanks that's heavier than water, so there's little reason to think that what you have will cause problems.  As long as the tank suffers no torsion stresses, you should be golden. >Second, I know that Blonde Nasos and Nasos are the same fish but why are blonds sold specifically as either male or female?  What is the difference in sexes that would make a male more expensive than a female in the blond variety?  Color or some other specific feature?  >>Blonde Naso tangs, to the best of my knowledge, are at most a color variant, but I believe that they are one and the same fish.  I'll call it a marketing ploy.  The long streamers off the tails are the desirable feature.  See here (almost to the bottom of the page) for a brief description (also, please do search our site) >>-->   http://www.wetwebmedia.com/tangscks.htm >>Now, I'm going to make an assumption here, I believe you're asking because you'd like to put one of these big fellas in your 72 gallon tank.  I would like to suggest to you that you go with a Zebrasoma species, instead, as Nasos and other large, free swimming tangs really do need far more space, and are known to hurt themselves and other fish if darting about rapidly.  I'll also tell you that these fish are a PAIN to ship, they rip bags open like nobody's business! >Thanks for your help guys.  I look forward to reading the second book on reefs, I love The Conscientious Marine Aquarist, however, I have found that a majority of the stuff in the book is right on WWM, but I love the book anyway and am still glad I bought it.  Thanks for the help guys.  John (Fin) >>Yes, just (finally!) having purchased the book myself, I'm quite glad I've got it.  I am also a big proponent of a full, well-rounded reference library, so please do continue buying as much literature as you can.  Good luck!  Marina

Ill Naso Tang and UV sterilizer Hello Guys, <Hi Scott, Don with you tonight> First of all, you have sold me on the QT and I just purchased one today after reading through the many testimonials on the web site and in light of my sick Naso. I will follow protocol of many other write-ins with a description of set-up and with a few questions. Sorry for the information overload, and thanks for any guidance you can offer to this novice aquarist.   Tank description : 75 gallon, custom sea life wet-dry and protein skimmer. live sand, Rio 2500 powerhead, no U.V sterilizer yet, but am currently shopping for one and open for suggestions in this area. Water parameters: ph- 8.2 ammonia - .40 (?color chart!) nitrite - .25 nitrate - 20 --- I can't seem to affect these parameters, with my biweekly 10% water changes, or even after a 25% change today. any suggestions <If these numbers are accurate, you have something dying/decaying (like food, snail, crab, etc) keeping these high. The ammonia and nitrite need to be 0. Could be the 'dry' part of the wet dry filter. Is your skimmer giving good skimmate, dark color/good quantity, daily? It should. Could your tests be inaccurate? See if you have a local Fish Store or another aquarium friend that can confirm?> I purchased a Naso from an out of town dealer with several specimens - half of which had black powdery spots all over and half of which looked and acted fine. I chose one of the healthy ones and after 5 days, mine is looking the same. He has been pacing constantly from one side of  tank to the other around rockwork for 3 days. I found him lying motionless this morning and thought he was dead. I have set up a 10 gallon quarantine tank ( I know, finally). I gave it a freshwater dip and placed it in QT. <Yes, we should never buy from a tank (or even an apparent 'clean' tank if the store uses a combined water system) that shows any kind of disease. Never, as you now know :(.> prior to reading your website I : set up QT with all new water (oops) and new sponge filter (2nd oops) -- now what?     <Make lots of salt water and aureate the heck out of it. Get ready to use it for  daily (20-50%) water changes. You will need to do this to keep ammonia and nitrite in check> also dosed with 1st dose of copper treatment (now wishing I hadn't)-- stop or go?     <Hmm, yes, for black spot, fresh water dips are highly successful and much less stressful. Initiate water changes and remove/replace sponge from filter. Make sure the fresh water dips are pH, temp adjusted and aerated> Naso is not eating (offered live kelp, and Mysis shrimp among others)-- hasn't eaten in 3 days <Continue offering, siphoning off uneaten excess right away> I also have yellow tang in tank that was successfully treated for pop-eye, but is showing pale coloring around face. is this disease or nutrition deficiency? <I would increase veggie in diet, maybe a supplement by soaking in Selcon if you can find it> I am also concerned about: purchasing an appropriate U.V sterilizer with the correct flow rates-- my water parameters and the ever presence of  am, ni, and na-- <I would read here http://www.wetwebmedia.com/UVFAQs.htm and the blue links at the top of the page for more. I found this link by typing 'U.V sterilizer' into the Google search at the bottom of the WetWebMedia.com home page. Try it you'll like it!> my dealer sold me an air pump to match the 10 gallon tank but I'm not sure if it is adequate for this fish-- <I am sure the pump is OK for the QT. A small powerhead is a good idea as well. But let's be frank. The worst news for your fish is that a 75 is possibly (but I don't think so) large enough for a yellow tang. And for the Naso? Forget it as this fish is heading for 18". The Yellow Tang needs 90-120G and the Naso several 100's of gallons. Don> Naso Greetings friends (there are so many of you I feel disrespectful to whom ever will answer my question to say a name: Bob, Anthony, etc.) <No worries> Question about a mystery Naso.  I work at our LFS and am the marine care taker.  We ordered a Naso tang and I was thinking we would get a Naso lituratus (lituratus) like we usually do, however they mixed up and sent us something different but it is in the Naso family.  They said it was a blue spot Naso but I have never herd of this kind.  Are they right. <Likely N. unicornis. Please see here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/naso.htm> He is a great eater and is quite different from the usually expected Naso coloration, even unicorn Nasos.  He has a blotched grey to tan body color (dark colors) With deep blue spots around his face.  Other than that he has the Naso body form.  Could you also guide me to some info on this particular species of Naso with some pictures to see what an adult looks like.  Thanks for your help, if more info is needed to find the species let me know. John <You will find what you seek at the above citation. Bob Fenner>

More pacing (swimming) with tangs - 2/17/03 Hey crew. I love the site, read it everyday.. <Thanks kindly, my friend> I'll try and make this short. I have a Naso tang for about 3 months. He's great .he has a wonderful personality, eats like pig and very social and peaceful with the rest of my animals. He has no scars or signs of  illness or rapid gill movement. Everything looks good. The weird thing is at night when the lights go out, he'll start swimming back and forth from one end to the other . <This is very common behavior with Naso tangs as well as Powder blue, Whitecheek and powder browns... cause by undersized tanks and/or lack of water flow (10X minimum... 20 X tank volume is better). Try extra water movement fish. Still... this fish is one of those species that needs large under-stocked tanks for vast open swimming room. Rather strict about it. A lot of rockwork or tanks under 6' for medium sized specimens may not be able to prevent this pacing behavior> He doesn't hit anything or smack himself just swims back and forth . <Understood. Its extremely common. You can see it a lot with these species listed in pet shop tanks and wholesalers where the fish are really crowded necessarily> (only does this with lights out) The light are on timers first set goes off then the second set1/2 hr. later then the third set. and there's even a small night light,  so I don't think he's frightened. <Agreed... but stress induced/nervous nonetheless... rather like big cats in the zoo that pace at times> Is this nocturnal behavior, should I be concerned? I'm not sure how long he does this. But in the morning he's fine ,comes to the front of tank when I walk in. I am a bit concern. What do you think? As always Thanks ! you guys are the best! Bill <Do let us know if the extra water flow helps, my friend. best regards, Anthony>

Naso tang and Blonde Naso tang incompatibility - 2/12/03 Hi crew of WWM, <Howdy!> I would like to thanks you guys once again for your help in the past.   <thanks kindly> I am now confronting a problem about Naso tangs that I am somewhat confused.  I have had one Naso tang in my 180 gallon tank for about 5 weeks now and it has been doing well. Then when I added a blonde Naso tang 2 days ago, <oh-no... > the Naso tang started to chased, harassed and bite the blonde.   <yep> Now the blonde is weak and looked "bite off", my once perfectly beautiful blonde has bit off fins everywhere and is swimming rather strangely.  I thought that Naso tangs are peaceful creatures. <with most other fishes, but not conspecifics... and not two males (likely... most such have the nice fins)... and sure as heck not long term in a 180!These fishes each get over a foot long.> Should I take out one of them?   <definitely> Or give them both time to get along?   <unlikely to work for their adult size if nothing else> I've read everywhere on WWM about tangs and tangs compatibility and no info was much of help. <it is usually a bad idea to mix any tangs, large angels or large butterflies together... natural aggression. Why bother when there are so many hundreds of other beautiful fishes to choose from?> Ohh yeah... one more thing, my Naso tang has a yellow line at the caudal tail and my blonde has a black line.  Does this have anything to do with the aggression? What does this mean?   <not a clear symptom of anything specific> Thanks again for your help crew of WWM. <best of luck to you, bub. Anthony>

Re: sick tang Hello! <Hi there> Our Naso Tang has not been acting like himself the last couple of days.  He does not beg for food, or come up to the front of the tank when we come in the room.  He has not been very active, as well.  Today I noticed a discoloration on his tail juncture (where the tail spines(?) are located).  The only way I can think to describe it is that it looks like someone spilled ink on the spot. <Agree with your apt description> I've attached 2 pictures - they are not very good, but hope that it will help you in diagnosing the problem.  My first instinct tells me to put him in the quarantine tank with antibiotics - agree? <Actually... I would leave this fish where it is (in the main/display tank) and boost its immune system via food (vitamin, HUFA soaking). Bob Fenner> Thanks is advance!

- Tang ID - <Greetings, JasonC here...> I have just found your photo ID number 1166 of the above noted fish. <I'm guessing you mean this one: http://wetwebfotos.com/Home?actionRequest=mediaView&ID=1166 > I set up a marine tank in may last year, and have progressed to a larger tank just recently.  During one of my weekly trips to the local marine fish stockist, I can across the same fish as in your picture.  Unfortunately, I an unable to find an good information on this fish. <You should try your hand at fishbase.org - pretty much the definitive list of species and their related facts.> I bought the fish from the stockist.  It had for the last couple of weeks been in a relatively small tank approx 2ft, and looked to be in a lot of distress.  The fish is now in a much larger tank, at present and is eating well, it did have a lot of difficulty breathing in its previous home (too small a tank, no rocks to hide behind, and (possibly too strong lighting), before going into its final home. <Sounds like what I would expect.> I have not seen this fish before in any of the shops, and wondered if you might have some useful information. <It's a Naso tang - Fishbase has the full size at 54cm - that's pretty big. You may need a larger tank before too long.> What is the correct name for this fish, as different shops have different names against its photo. <Just going by the image-match, Naso lopezi - I've seen it called the Blue Dot Tang - Fishbase calls it the Elongate Unicornfish.> kind regards Amir Morsi <Cheers, J -- >

Naso tang problems Hello, over the time of taking care of my fish I do a lot of research, reading books and message boards. And I have heard on the message boards from a lot of people that there Naso tangs do perfect for about 6 mos. and then suddenly they wake up and there Nasos are dead, I am one of these people as well. There are no disease signs, there perfect looking, until they croak. After my Naso died I asked my LFS about it, he said for the past year or so Nasos have been doing bad. He told me too about the 6 mos. problem with Nasos. He said he tries making big deals so he doesn't have a dead Naso in his store. Did you ever hear about this? <Mmm, no definite time frame on these sorts of mysterious losses. Most of the Naso lituratus sold do die from being kept in too small a volume, size systems principally (starving is another large source of captive mortality)> I want to try another Naso, is there any other way I can avoid losing another Naso. I think these fish are awesome. BTW my tank is 240 gallons, water quality great. Thanks! <Please see here re selection: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/naso.htm Bob Fenner>

Re: Naso Lituratus, and Naso Unicorn Hey guys, question for you.  Generally tangs don't mix well, but the Naso is generally considered pretty mild in territoriality vs. other members of the species (A. sohal, Zebrasoma family, etc).  Anyhow, in a large tank (800 gals), I have a Naso lituratus (regular lipstick tang).  Anyhow, thinking of getting from someone a unicorn tang that has outgrown his tank.  Do you know of any issues with the two species in a tank ?  The Naso is very very docile in the tank. <Mmm, well, these two species are found "together" over a good part of their range... and you do have a good sized system. I give you good odds that they'll get along> The tank has a few angelfish, two butterflies, a purple and hippo tang, and various small dither fish (square Anthias, some green Chromis), etc.  It's currently a lightly stocked tank for the size, so that's not an issue.  I'm mainly concerned whether the two Naso species have the potential to get along. . . .  Thanks Jim <Bob Fenner>

Re: Naso Tang Hello, I own a 72 gallon Tank with a 3" yellow tang, 3" Picasso trigger, 2" regal tang, 4"Lamarcks angel, and a 4" Naso tang (Naso lituratus). My question is concerning his size I know that they can reach to a huge 20" in a 15 to 20 year period. I was wondering how long I could keep this little guy in my 72 before I have to give it up or buy a larger tank. Also he pigs out on the prepared dry algae and is huge and then the next morning he has a pinched belly. Thanks for your help, Greg <Hi Greg, Your Naso needs room to swim starting with a minimum 4 foot long tank, preferably 6 feet, and the larger the better. Please go to http://www.wetwebmedia.com/naso.htm  for more info on Naso Tangs and their requirements.  Craig>

Re: Naso Tang Hello Web Media crew <G'day> I recently bought a Naso Tang that is only grazing on the plant growth from my live rocks. He completely stripped the growth from some Fiji rock that grew a kelp like growth ( yellowish brown leave and stems) and is dining on other macroalgae - red color with narrow stems mesh like growth. I tried green and brown algae sheets, dried kelp from an Asian grocery - no luck. I also tried live brine shrimp and only my other fish ate that. Q. What might be going on? <He likes the real algae better.> and what is the next best avenue to take? <Keep offering a varied diet.> Fresh shrimp from the grocery ? I do not want to loose this fish. Looking to hear from you. Thanks. <Check out the links below for more information. http://wetwebmedia.com/naso.htm http://wetwebmedia.com/nasofaqs.htm>

Re: fish trade-ins Thank you , I really appreciate your reply.  Again,  in regard to the color of Naso Tangs, could it be that females are less colorful than the males? That is the case with birds. Thanks again, Helene <Hello Helene,  in Naso tangs there may be a slight difference between the sexes, but not much.  Feel free to send us a picture.  Anthony suggested to make sure that there is live rock in the tank to provide a natural source of food and to also feed Tetra bits and Vibra-Gro pelleted foods for color enhancement.  Best Regards, Gage.>

Naso Tangs & Algae Anthony, <Anthony is a little busy right now, so I am filling in.> Thanks for responding back so quickly on the brown algae problem I was having. You mentioned you knew the type of algae I was talking about but could not remember the name. I was wondering if you had any luck locating the type. <Feel free to browse through the images we have on www.WetWebMedia.com regarding.> Also you mentioned placing a couple urchins in the tank to control the problem. This has been done, two Royal Urchins. I heard that the Naso lituratus would be good at helping to control this also. Your thoughts on this and compatibility with a Yellow Tang. <Nasos in general are relatively compatible with Yellow Tangs, but Nasos require large tanks (180 gallons and up) and very strong water movement (10 times the tank volume per hour minimum with approaching 20 times being optimal, example a 180 gallon tank with total circulation in the 1800-3600 gph range).> Thanks again, Jim <You are welcome. -Steven Pro>

Tangling With Tangs! 1) I saw a Naso with streamers, are these just old old old tangs? <Not always> Will they only get streamers if they are of a certain sex? <External sex differences in Surgeonfishes are generally undetectable, except during breeding, when males may darken a bit in color> 2) Is their much personality difference between Blonde Naso and a regular Naso?   <I have never noticed a difference in personality between the two> Does Red sea make for a calmer fish than a Naso from another location? <Again, I have never noticed this. Calmer behavior generally is a result of tank conditions, such as size of system, water quality, lighting, and tankmates> 3) I heard that if you get a big Naso and put it in the tank that it will wreak havoc on the other fish, even outside of it's species.  So I was told to get a medium sized one, and let it grow big in captivity.  What do you think about that? <These tangs can be aggressive, yes! I always like to purchase smaller fish and let them grow. You need to have a very large aquarium to really accommodate this species for anything approaching its natural life span. I hate to see large tangs caught and offered for sale. Many simply cannot adjust to the confinement and conditions of captive life.> 4)  I would like to get a school of small powders (blue or gold rimmed).  How many would it take?  I will be getting ones that are 1.5 inches long.  My tank is 8ft long 268 gallons. <Well- I don't think you'll like my answer, but here goes: Yes, you can keep them in groups (I have seen this done before), but I really believe that you would need an even larger tank (hundreds of gallons) than you have to truly accommodate them for the long term in a group> 5)  Here is what I would like to do : introduce three small powders , and have them school.  Introduce a purple tang that is 2-3inches. finally introduce a 10-12 in Naso with streamers  (do blonde Naso get streamer?) <This type of grouping has been, and can be done. Again, I will tell you that you have to consider their ultimate size. These fishes can be crowded to a certain extent, provided that their other needs (water quality, stability, diet. etc.) have been met. Keep in mind, however, that this may not always work in captivity. On a reef, these fish have been shown to maintain territories of several square yards each! Start with small specimens. Behavior in captivity in groups could be unpredictable; be prepared to remove a specimen if it is suffering from harassment. Do consider all of the needs of these beautiful fishes before attempting such a grouping. Good luck!> Thanks for your time and expertise <And thank you for stopping by! Scott F.>

Tang Identification, Naso tang sp ID Please help me in identifying a Surgeonfish at my LFS! The staff there has this fish in one a 650 gallon show tank, but has no idea what it is. It's a gorgeous blue Tang with an elongated body, a very light blue or grey colored body and small blue neon spots and short stripes and a triangular tail, similar to Naso vlamingii. In fact, with the exception of the coloration and streamers he looks identical to the vlamingii shown in CMA. <Hmmm.. some variation with N. vlamingii between individuals and diff ages. N. brevirostris is also quite similar and lacks the lyretail (more triangular indeed). A Naso species at any rate and all that we need to know since all such reach nearly 3 feet long as adults. Few private aquariums are large enough to fairly house this Genus> I haven't been able to find the fish with similar coloration in my reference books. What would you recommend the minimum tank size for this fish be as well? CMA says the vlamingii is far too big for most aquariums.  Thanks, Marc <agreed... all Naso species are too big for most home tanks. Even the common "Lipstick" Naso lituratus gets 2 feet long. We are literally talking about a need for 8 to 10 foot long aquaria at bare minimum for just the 3-5 year plan. I cannot recommend Nasos for most fellow aquarists. I do thank you kindly for inquiring before you bought it, though. Very responsible aquarium husbandry here! Kudos to you. Best regards, Anthony>

Naso Tang with cloudy eyes (more: antibiotic use) Hello all, I have a customer with a Naso Tang that has stopped feeding and has cloudy eyes. All of their water parameters look good and this particular customer is very diligent in maintenance and feeding. I have never experienced this type of problem and honestly have rarely had to use antibiotics with any saltwater fish so I would be very appreciative if you could recommend any antibiotic or other course of treatment. <May well be that this animal (especially if it is the only one thus affected in the system) just mechanically injured itself (ran into the sides, rock)... this happens with Naso tang species (need room)... and that there is no specific treatment advised, advisable... other than good maintenance practices, self-healing> Also, if you could recommend particular antibiotics for treatment of various "common" bacterial type infections in saltwater fish I would be grateful.  <There are none. Most all infectious diseases of ornamental aquatics are secondary, tertiary... opportunistic due to deficiencies in water quality, nutrition, battering by tankmates, the odd genetic anomaly... some antimicrobials like Furan compounds are efficacious as adjuncts to improving ones chances in improving conditions overall... in some cases dips/baths, feeding, injection (intramuscularly mainly) of antibiotics is something to be suggested... but the cases are few, specific> In my years of keeping saltwater fish both as a hobbyist and now an LFS owner I really can't recall needing to use antibiotics so I feel a bit inept when asked how to treat these types of problems. <Oh, agreed. This has been my experience, recollection as well. Bob Fenner> Thanks, Richard

Re: Naso Tang with cloudy eyes (marine antibiotic use) Thank you for the info. This is essentially what I have been advising so I'll stick to it. <Me too... have never experienced definitive proof of antibiotic benefits on a consistent basis... and recent works (e.g. Ed Noga, and I spoke w/ him re at MACNA XIII re)... other than expensive brood stock, and mainly trauma (as in spawning) incidents, direct injection... am of the opinion that such compounds mainly do "good" by modifying water chemistry (e.g. tetracycline hydrochloride lowering pH), perhaps reducing TBC's (total bacteria counts)...> For whatever reason some customers seem to go on the defensive at the suggestion that they have water quality issues and are intent on buying something that will magically fix their problems. <Bingo! Part of the/our "western ethic"... trained by Madison Ave. to "buy something"... perhaps we can, should sell "sugar pills"... oh, Weiss has beat us to the punch...> The typical response is "I know my water is fine because it's perfectly clear" <To which I typically respond "so is vinegar"> or the best one yet "I know it's not my water because I only use Ozarka and it's the best". Ah well, sometimes there isn't much you can say. <Be yourself, state what you believe, know, simply. Ask questions like "what if you used distilled water" or only drank such yourself... ways to introduce, induce more open-mindedness. Reciprocally, maybe you're ready, in need of a holiday? Bob Fenner> Thanks again, Richard

Captive Raised Nasos? Hi Bob, Could you tell me if there are any captive raised Naso lituratus in Canada? If so where could I order one from. Thank you so very much. Lynn <I know of efforts by folks to breed, rear this species, and think possibly the folks in Polynesia do catch this fish as post larvae at times, but as far as I'm aware, all Surgeonfishes are wild-collected (at this time). Bob Fenner>

Naso Tang Not Eating Hello, I am fairly new in saltwater fish.  I've had my 75gal tank since the beginning of July, cycled it with Damsels, tested the water, and it is perfect.  I bought a Naso Tang, Kole Tang, and Porcupine Puffer Fish about two weeks ago.  The Puffer is eating good.  The Kole Tang has finally started eating pellets other than the live rock.  But our Naso is not eating as much, especially since I can see his belly looks pinched in.  He used to eat from the live rock, but will not eat the seaweed I have dangling from the seaweed clip.  He doesn't seem to have any parasites on him. Any suggestions?  I am getting worried.  Will the fish actually starve themselves to death?  I've tried green seaweed, brine shrimp, and putting Vitamin/HUFA supplements in the tank, which is supposed to "stimulate" their appetite, as my local fish store told me.  Thanks. <<Good Morning, Barbara Taormina helping out while the majority of the crew is at MACNA. I'm sorry to hear your concerns with your Naso, one of my favorite fish. Naso tangs require large tanks and are known to sulk if they feel "cramped", if there's been a change in the decor or if the tank is without strong circulation. You don't mention the size of the Naso or the amount of live rock present in your tank and my concern is that there isn't enough to sustain both the Kole and the Naso. This is a relatively new set-up and the amount of algae growth on the live rock may have been depleted.  I would attempt locating some "plant rock" from a local fish store.  This is small pieces of rock with various types of Caulerpa growing on it or perhaps you know a fellow hobbyist that maintains a refugium that could share some macro algae.  It can take some time for fish to become accustomed to a seaweed clip. I would try rubber banding the seaweed to a small piece of rock where he will hopefully find it while foraging.  My Naso is particularly fond of Nori, (which can be found at Oriental grocery stores) and is also crazy about frozen cubes of "Emerald Entree", Formula One & Two, and Mysis shrimp. The use of vitamin supplements is great, soak all foods for 20-30 minutes before offering. Best of luck, Barbara>>

Naso only eats Mysid Before I get underway, I like to thank you for your valuable service especially as it is volunteer based. <You are welcome. Thank you for the acknowledgement> I recently purchased a Naso Tang. He is about 4". I've read your advice regarding buying one over 5" but I honestly couldn't afford it as the difference in price was quite significant.  <Yes... understandably... due to the size of bag, water weight, oxygen it takes to ship these active fish... the bigger sizes take much more...> I did, however, wait two weeks before purchasing him and checked to see if he was eating. The problem is he only seems to eat Mysid shrimp. I've tried to get him to eat seaweed, marine algae, Spirulina, and flakes. Realizing that he needs a vegetarian element to his diet, I've also tried to withhold the Mysid in the hopes that he would change his singular tastes. All was to no avail. Also, he is not eating enough and has become somewhat emaciated. <Try soaking the seaweed in a vitamin mix (like Selcon, Microvit...) for a good fifteen minutes or more ahead of dangling it at the upper edge (with water wafting it about). Try different types of algae (from the oriental food section/store... reconstituted by soaking in water), particularly the softer Reds...> Do you have any advice? Should I continue to withhold Mysis until he turns vegetarian or simply keeping feeding and hope he develops a craving for green? <I would keep feeding the animal the mysids, but try making some homemade food (gelatin or other emulsifier based) into chunks and feed it mixed with other materials (algae, pellet...) to wean this animal onto other food types. Recipes for same can be found on the Net> Any help you can give will be much appreciated. -Limak <Persistence pays. Bob Fenner>

Naso Tang I have a Naso that is about 3 inches long. He paces back and forth every once in a while across the front of the tank. He eats well but I was wondering if the pacing means anything? <This pacing behavior is usually caused by poor water circulation. Nasos in particular need very brisk water movement, 20 times the tank volume per hour. -Steven Pro>

Re: Naso Tang How do I get 20 times the tank volume of movement? <You can use a combination of powerheads and external return pumps.> Will this affect the yellow tang and clown? <No> How does not having enough water movement affect the Naso? <The theory is that they panic, thinking they got trapped in a tidal pool. If they were truly stuck behind a sand bar they would die from heat, low dissolved oxygen, or even a fish eating bird. But basically, they freak out from stagnant water. -Steven Pro>

Naso tang ("Hey baby, check out my streamers") Hello I wanted to compliment you on your website, I think it's the most complete internet site about aquarium and marine related topics on the net .(is there anything that you don't know!!), I go on it almost every day to learn new things, it is very helpful. <Pleased to hear it, share> My question is that I have a Naso tang about 5-6 inch long it doesn't seem to develop the "streamer", how much time does it take normally is it only the male who develops the streamer I am a little bit confuse, and if so how can we tell if it's a male? I went to my local pet shop and nobody seems to have the answer. <Yes to some specimens not developing the caudal/tail fin streamers with age/growth. This is a sexual characteristic... of males. I had a friend at OTEC (Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion Lab), now NELHA (Natural Energy Lab Hawai'i Authority) on the Big Island, Kailua-Kona who was captive breeding and trying to rear Naso lituratus who told me that not quite so mature males sometimes lacked streamers... but all streamered individuals he assayed were functioning males. Bob Fenner> Thank you, Leonel 

Surgeonfishes: Tangs for  Marine Aquariums
Diversity, Selection & Care
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by Robert (Bob) Fenner
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