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FAQs about Tangs of the Genus Naso Disease/Health 1

FAQs on Genus Naso Tang Disease: Naso Disease 1, Naso Health 2,
FAQs on Genus Naso Tang Disease by Category: Diagnosis, Environmental, Nutritional, Social, Trauma, Pathogenic (plus see Tangs/Rabbitfishes & Crypt), Genetic, Treatments

Related Articles: Naso Tangs

Related FAQs: Naso Tangs 1Naso Tangs 2, Naso Tangs 3, Naso ID, Naso Behavior, Naso Compatibility, Naso Selection, Naso Systems, Naso Feeding, Naso Reproduction, Surgeons In General, Tang ID, Selection, Tang Behavior, Compatibility, Systems, Feeding, Disease

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

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

- Naso Tang Life Span - My fish died over the weekend and I believe it was 8 yrs old.  <Am sorry to hear of your loss, but good job keeping it this long.>  How long can these fish live?  <In the wild, likely two to three times this amount. In captivity... hard to say, too many factors go into its quality of life. I'd say that under ideal circumstances [giant tank, lots of water flow, low competition for food], you could expect at least 15-20 years.> Thanks, John <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>

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!

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 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>

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 Talkin' 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>

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>

- 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 -- >

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 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 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 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>

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>

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>

New Naso Good to write you again which must mean I have a problem. Actually it is more of asking a question to prevent the spread of a problem, if it is a problem that is. Anyway, the problem is that I have just purchased a Naso tang 3 days ago, and up to 2 days he looked great and acted great. He eats like a pig and enjoys swimming and looking the whole tank over, normal stuff ya know. Anyway, last night I noticed that around the inside of his orange lips it looked like he had a layer of white mucus like crap. Like someone had stuck a white rubber ring on the inside of his lips. As the day went on and the fish went picking and eating algae off the rocks he just generally rubbed the white filmy crap off.  So I thought that was the end of it, since it has not stopping his eating. I forgot to mention, when I first received the fish it looked like it had some slight pickings at its fins that are on its sides next to it's gills, sorry I can't remember the fin name <pectorals>. I didn't think anything of it, I have had fish come in like that before, I just figured he was getting a little bit of bothering, but what fish doesn't every now and then, and I figured it would heal up in a week or so. Anyway, come this morning the film was back around the mouth and now the picked edges of his fins had some white film on them too. I thought maybe his eye looked like it was starting to cloud a bit but I could be wrong so disregard that statement. Anyway, do you have any ideas what this could be, if it is anything? I was thinking maybe a bacterial parasite of some sort. The only reason I hope it is this is because the only other disease that I have seen that looks like this is a Microsporidean infection, and if it is that I am a goner, or at least the fish is. But I really don't think it is that. if it is a parasitical infection how should I treat it? I have been told different ways. Some people tell me that a fresh water dip will cure it, bad thing is I don't know how long to dip them, you could help me with that. The other is a long bath in Methylene blue. So your help is greatly appreciated and needed, thank you. John Moyer <<I don't think there is actually anything wrong with your Naso (lituratus) Tang... what you describe is likely "just" some sort of mucus that the animal is producing in reaction to being handled, and healing... And I would not net and dip it... not worth the stress and damage from the dip procedure itself... Keep feeding and enjoying the animal...Bob Fenner>>

Sick Naso Hey Bob, This is a new one to me. I have had him for almost 4 years. Has had symptoms for about 6 days. Symptoms: not feeding partial cloudy eye (getting a little better) color changes from very dark to normal listless (except for occasional swim) when swimming, bumps into rocks and corals seems like he is blind. possible poisoning? some kind of internal parasite? <Maybe... but more likely a bad "bump" in the night... the tank top or side... do try a water change, offering some Nori sheet algae on a plastic clip...> This fish stresses real bad when moved so I have not moved him yet. Not sure what to treat for so nothing drastic right now. Any help would be appreciated . Thanks <Agreed re the moving... don't. Do try to be patient, and offer the algae, do the water change... Bob Fenner>

Sick Tang? Hey, My Naso Tang is a little red around the gills. He is eating well and acting normal. The water is at about 1.023 but I changed my water yesterday and before then it was at 1.018. The ammonia is at 0 and there are slight traces of nitrites. Is this a natural thing or is he sick. Also, I lost 2 turbo snail this week. I think it was do to my salinity being low but I'm not sure because I'm new at the invertebrate game. Thank You, Jonathan Pac <Yowzah... this specific gravity change is way too fast... about one thousandth a day is maximum... Be careful that you haven't depopulated your beneficial nitrifying bacteria here... and take things much slower henceforth... otherwise you'll have more than a Nasos red gill covers.
Re: Sick Tang? Hey, Well the tang died. I am going to wait a week or two before I buy another fish. The only problem is that I don't know what to add. I have a 55 gallon tank with 40 lbs of live rock, protein skimmer, and a UV sterilizer. I have a flame angel fish, a pair of clown fish, and a royal gamma. What should I add next? Thanks For Your Help, Jonathan Pac <Sorry to hear of your loss... Do wait a good two weeks... and consider another, more suitable species of tang... an exhaustive review of all can be found on the WWM site, as well as a giant re-do of marine livestock selection en toto. Bob Fenner>

Naso Tangs have a couple of fish that have white spots on there body. I have a 110 gal reef tank. I set up a 6 gal hospital tank to treat the 2 fish that showed signs of these spots "Ick" 1 Blue Hippo Tang and 1 Naso Tang. The Naso Tang didn't have as many spots as the Blue Hippo but when I put them both in the tank after about 1 hour the Naso started to fling everywhere in the tank and just croaked. This was very upsetting. My Local fish store told me to set up the hospital tank and treat it with copper and place the fish in the hospital tank. They told me to do the follow. 1/Take water out of main tank to fill the hospital tank 2/Add copper to hospital tank and bring to level .20 ppm (after some reading I was a little unsure about the ppm level so I put it at .10-.13 ppm just to be safe) The blue hippo has been in the hospital tank for 24 hours now and doing ok. I also have 3 Percula true clowns now showing the white spots on there body as well as gasping very quickly for air. I am unsure whether I am missing something here as to I am very new to Marine Aquariums and never dealt with any diseases. I am afraid to put these little guys in the hospital tank because I don't want them to die just like the Naso did. I know that Ick is 2-3 week moving parasite on the host so I wanted to wait and get a response from you on how to proceed, or what I need to change. These guys normal diet is frozen-live brine shrimp, romaine lettuce (for tangs) and Marine Flake Food. My system uses a Wet/Dry Trickle filtration system and as a SeaClone Skimmer also. Any help as soon as possible would be appreciated, as to I don't like to see these poor things pass away. Its just really sad. <<Who can say why the Naso reacted so negatively to the procedure... these species do not enjoy small systems... a six gallon is very tiny to them... I would have suggested a higher initial concentration of free copper... more like .35ppm and never letting the residual drop below .20... I would move the damsels, all other fishes and treat them together... Do read over the "ich" pieces on the site: Home Page regarding what to do with your main system going forward... And do develop and adhere to an acclimation protocol going forward to prevent having these problems. Bob Fenner>>

Re: confused-urgent ich problem Dear Bob, When we put the little Naso back in his home tank, he continued to look better and the next morning his dark spots were barely there. He still looks good. We called all over town and found a few cleaner shrimps. I wanted them anyway and I hope they can avoid becoming an expensive lunch for the hermits.  <Yes, they should be able to co-exist... unless you have "mean" species of Hermits... and/or both are hungry...> I love that little Naso (not so little). He's amazingly intelligent. I hand fed him Sunday as much as he would not spit out while he was in the copper tank. Now he eats out of my hand reliably. After yesterday, though, he turns distress colors when he sees the net. I hope I can win his trust back. <You will> Thanks for all the replies. People tell us getting a UV filter will prevent this.  <No... a myth> Now I'm just hoping the shrimp and fish "bond". By the way, your web site is an excellent source of info. (I would expect nothing less given that your book was so wonderful). <Ahh, thank you> I can't help it. I love this fish. Thanks again, Allyson <Be chatting my friend. Bob Fenner>

Naso Troubles Thanks for the quick response! I apologize for asking another (unrelated) question, so soon on the heels of the last one, but I forgot to ask it last time. I have a Naso tang who seems to be wasting away. A friend took care of all of my fish for a few months, while I was in between tanks. When I got them back a month ago, they all seemed to be a bit on the thin side, but most have come back nicely. The Naso, however, seems to look worse. He seems interested in food, and vigorously attacks the sushi Nori that I feed every day, but he spits out whatever he chews. He does seem to keep all of the frozen and flake foods down. Is this something that you're familiar with? Can you suggest anything? Thanks again, Dan <Yes. Do try other "human intended" (especially Rhodophyte, Red Algae (though they'll likely look green...) species like Rhodymenia, Gracilaria... and soak all in Selcon (or other vitamin prep.s like Zoecon, Microvit...) a good fifteen minutes before offering them to your Naso... and some meaty foods you can suspend on a "feeding spoon" near the surface... Bob Fenner>

Ich, another parasite, or stress??? I recently purchased a Naso tang that appears to Ich, but I'm not sure (I'm new to this). The Tang had a few white spots which now only really appear when the fish turns a darker shade of grey. What concerns me is that it now has some white patches on it, as if it has been scratching. I have started to treat it in a separate tank with Melafix and CopperSafe, I have also given it a fresh water dip. I have noticed that it has not eaten anything in several days. Is there anything else I can do? Thanks, Kyle <Maybe. I would lower the specific gravity and stop the Melafix. Please read over the ich, treatment, tang, tank troubleshooting... sections of our site: www.WetWebMedia.com, starting here: http://wetwebmedia.com/tanktroubleshting.htm Bob Fenner>
Re: Ich, another parasite, or stress???
Thanks.....I am new to saltwater tanks and have been informing myself as quickly as possible through websites and local fish stores. Regretfully the Naso didn't make it and the specific gravity is really high, so I'm slowly going to lower that. Thanks for the help and all the info on the webpage. <Mmm, good to learn through as many inputs as practical... be chatting Bob Fenner>

Re: pls tell me your are online... (Naso demise) So far he is still alive.... 5 and a half hours after the move.... I also moved the cleaner wrasse into the hospital with him. The cleaner has been picking at Naso almost none stop. Naso even has ich inside his mouth.... He opens his mouth really wide... I guess wanting wrasse to clean inside there. <Hopefully> I am doing the SeaChem Cupramine treatment... I did a test and it is at 0.15 for now.... I will continue to test and adjust as needed (hopefully) <Good> THE PLAN: I will not buy more fish for the rest of the year..... <Let's not go that far> I will however get a Neon Goby and maybe a fourth cleaner shrimp. I am considering dropping the Salinity if another fish shows symptoms. <I would do this pre-emptively. Like starting NOW> If not should I drop it anyway? <Yes> If I can afford it should I get another tank for fish only and move all the fish over there for treatment or just to simply let the tank fallow for a few months? <The former is better> Would a 55 gallon be enough for a purple tang, yellow tang, 6 line wrasse, Percula clown, scooter blenny and a Naso I hope? <Yes> Does a FO tank require more than natural light? <No, not for treatment purposes. No photosynthetic life, no need for extra lighting> Or is that not necessary if no other fish show symptoms? <The system and its occupants do have the disease, whether they are currently showing symptoms or no... your situation is "in-between stages of infestation"... study the life history of Cryptocaryon... as time goes by (just a few days) you will start to evidence "multi-generational stages"...> The ich would then be considered in check with the current cleaner crew? <Possibly... but if/when "balance" shifts to the worsening of conditions for your fish livestock/hosts... Bob Fenner>
Re: pls tell me your are online...
OK.... now to implement the SG drop.... Easy concept but what is the best way? Is there a formula for adding a percentage of change water with NO salt that will drop the SG by .001 a day? <Just an "eye ball" approximation of a proportionality... current water volume to remove, replace with just freshwater...> Should the Hydro meter say 1.017 or do I have to be really precise and look up the temp variations and such to get the exact salinity? <Hmm, not necessary to be that close to real salinity.> Thank you ever so much for your support my friend :) <You are welcome. Anima bona fac (Lingua Latina for "be of good life"). Bob Fenner>

Ich Life Cycle,,, adventures of Naso Hey Bob, I read about the Ich cycle a bit more and came across some info about the Cyst encased in gelatin stage.... <Yes> I believe I saw one a long time ago.... <Not visible to the "naked eye"> I thought that it was just mucus released by one of the corals.... So could this have been a Cyst at the bottom of my tank? It is/was about 1/2 an inch in diameter max. Is it safe to suck it out during a water change every time I see one? I have seen one on 2 separate occasions.... about 2 weeks ago and say 5 weeks ago....Knowledge.... there is no substitute..... Again your guidance is very appreciated, Robert PS. Do the cleaner shrimp eat ich in the Tomite stage or cyst stage? <They consume the encysted stages (and necrotic tissue, mucus...) on the fish hosts only. Bob Fenner>
Re: adventures of Naso
DOH!!! <No more Simpson's for you> I am getting used to the type of contradictions.... I hate that I had to learn the hard way like most people. <Not necessary, as you know> Found this... they say not good for reefs.... I am still in your camp... they gave no reasons WHY!!! Hyposalinity- This treatment cannot be done in a reef tank with invertebrates, live sand or live rock. Hyposalinity is at 16ppt, is highly effective at eliminating ich and surprisingly low stress. . This may be the best therapy as it is not a dip but rather a long-term bath that should last a minimum of three weeks. The treatment is more effective (although copper can be very effective) and less stressful than copper treatments. The only two disadvantages to using hyposalinity verses copper is an accurate hydrometer is need (or refractometer is even better) and you need to check the pH and alkalinity daily and add buffer as needed. Most hydrometers are inaccurate. You need one calibrated for reef temps and some large glass types are O.K. Stay away from plastic swing arm hydrometers they are not often accurate. Hyposalinity will NOT disrupt the biological filtration as long as the salinity is not lowered too abruptly. If you lower the salinity using two water changes a day for two days the bio-filter will be fine. The bacteria that perform biological filtration are the same in FW or SW all you have to do is acclimate them to the change When you are ready to introduce your fish raised the salinity back up to normal over the course of a few days to keep the fish from stressing from a quick change in salinity. <Some factual, other fictional material... Bob Fenner>

Ich cure??? or not?? What do you think about this product? I never heard of it.... found it by Google of course.... It would be a dream if it worked.... http://user.aol.com/pattiric/aquarium/fishvet3.htm  <My opinions about this and other ich remedies are posted on our site. Bob Fenner>

Re: Picture of Naso as promised Bad news my friend.... Naso passed away this morning... she will be missed by her human family.... <My heart has been heavy re this fish's plight. Did suspect as much> I will start the Salinity lowering tonight. It has to wait for enough tap water to get de-chlorinated... I let it sit until the chlorine evaporates... this a good technique? <Yes, actually a very good one... part of the best way to make up synthetic seawater. Read: http://wetwebmedia.com/water4maruse.htm> Is it ok if I lower the salinity less than .001 per day?  <Less is fine> or will this take too long to get to 1.017 and stress the coral too much? Once I reach 1.017 how long should I hold it? <A month or so> Is this holding of 1.017 dependant on how long it took me to get to it? <Yes, to some extent... you don't want the Spg sub-NSW (Near Seawater) for too long period> The question just above is not really addressed on your site.... yet.... <It should and now will be> Thanks friend.... Feel free to publish that pic I sent you of Naso... it is really unique... <Thank you for this. Bob Fenner> Robert

Naso Tang Hello, Recently got a Naso Tang.. it has white spots on it.. person at LFS said it is because the tang is scared. Is that something that really happens when they're just stressed, or should I be worried? <Mmm... I would be concerned... the white spots... are they "raised" in appearance? Transitional, or are they on the fish all day? Any other fishes showing signs? Likely the beginning of an ich infestation. Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/mardisease.htm going on to the links beyond as your interest, need leads you. Bob Fenner> Lisa H.
Re: Naso
I know by now you are probably annoyed with me. I have been reading all the articles on your web page about internal parasites and worms. From the vent of my fish seems there is something hanging out very little at first this is why I thought the fish was constipated but after reading your web page over and over and doing searches for internal parasites I have come to a conclusion that my fish has some sort of worm. Don't know which one but my fish is not eating and his stomach is getting bigger on the side it looks like their are 2 pointy things pushing from the inside almost looks as thought they are going to go through his skin close to his vent. I don't know what it is but I'm assuming it is either some type of bone being pushed from the inside out. My fish is getting larger and I feel that it is just the parasite getting larger I know my fish isn't eating I stare at him all day. <Not a bone... the condition, Ascites, can be due to a few causes... intercellular, parasitic...> If this is an internal parasite your web site is saying their is nothing that can be done. Which is telling me that sooner or later my fish is going to die?  <Mmm, sooner or later all life ceases...> Is their anything I can do to get rid of the parasite some type of home remedy or store bought item that can be force feed to him? Please help me out I have been reading for the past 3 days. <There are Anthelminthics, Vermifuges... like di-n-butyl tin oxide, Piperazine... are these appropriate here? I would just use the MgSO4 treatment suggested... Bob Fenner>
Re: Naso
I'm sorry but I forgot to mention the sometimes shakes kind of like he is saying no to the food. currently I'm feeding him formula 2 flakes Is this good) and sometimes he eats small pieces of krill that I feed my dogface. Should I try feeding him something else. Sorry for being a pain. <Please read over all the articles, FAQs posted on our site (www.WetWebMedia.com  re the family of Tangs/Doctors, Surgeonfishes. Bob Fenner>
Re: Naso
I'm not sure if he has a bacterial infection. I was just reading about parasites swelling up fish stomachs and it was treated with antibiotics.  <No my friend. Just as likely to cause troubles. Surgeonfishes have microfauna in their stomachs that they absolutely need> I just want to know what step I should do first I really like my tang I don't want him to go into shock by treating him the wrong way. No matter what I do I consult you or your website first. You are an aquarium guru. <Do try the Epsom. Good luck, life to you. Bob Fenner>
Re: Naso
I did like you said I used half a gallon of freshwater and half saltwater from my tank with two table spoons of Epsom salt. I tested my water and the readings were as follows. nitrite - 0 nitrate - 10 pH - 8.4 ammonia - 0 Gravity - 1.023 Should I proceed with these dips once a day or is this one time enough? <Once should do it> When should I start to rule out that its not constipation? The tang has not eaten for almost a week I would think his immune system is going to start to weaken and be prone to disease which is something no hobbyist wants. I have read up on the tang from your web page and have gained much information on them along with a dogface that I purchased. <Could be many other things afflicting this one specimen... looking like "constipation"... none of which are "treatable" in the short term. Hopeful/ly your Naso will resume feeding on its own. Force feeding this genus is generally unproductive, but worth considering... Bob Fenner>

Black spot (markings on a Naso Tang) Bob, Just to confirm. I'm pasting your description below. Yesterday, we had what looked like tiny white spots that disappeared and moved around like bubbles just in front of the lower/ventral fin. Now it looks like a fine black powder on the ventral/bottom fin of our Naso tang. If this is "black spot" you suggest fresh water dip. It doesn't look like a worm (I think someone called it a small ciliated protozoan?) Dakin says it can spread to the gills and they can suffocate. How long do we have before this happens?  <What? Do you have access to a microscope? I would scrape off some of these "black spots" and take a closer look... they are not ciliated Protozoans (e.g. ich)... these are too small to see with the "naked eye"... and moving about?> The fish is visiting the cleaner shrimp (they don't look too interested). Perhaps this will go away? It's weird because within the first hour the fish was awake, it looks like some of it has disappeared (not all of it). It always seems that diseases are worse in the morning...is that because the cleaner shrimp pick things off during the day? Treatment: Freshwater dip: adjust pH (w/baking soda), temp, truly FRESH water or should we just have a slightly lower specific gravity (e.g.1.019)? Additives to dip: Copper we've got Cupramine--what concentration?.2?)--perhaps some Methylene blue? Formalin? Do any of these things interact? If we have to choose, which is the most useful and least toxic to the fish? 2-10 minutes? Should the black spot disappear during this time? Should we just do it for 10 min or as long as the fish can tolerate? I suspect he'll freak out regardless.--some aeration Should 1 dip suffice? We've been getting Caulerpa and trying to grow it from a friend's tank. Do you think that might have transported it? He's got a yellow tang but it looked great.  One notable exception is Para vortex, the causative agent of "black spot disease", notably of yellow tangs. This is easily eliminated via freshwater dipping, though other authors suggest formalin baths and organophosphate remedies. Turbellarians, a group in the flatworm Phylum Platyhelminthes are mostly "free-living" non-parasitic species.  Thanks, Allyson <This is not Paravortex... on a Naso Tang... maybe a trematode/fluke... I wouldn't necessarily "treat it" unless symptomatically this condition seemed to be seriously negatively impacting this animals behavior. Bob Fenner>

Re: Naso Tangs. . . (more to fish health, knowing and the nature of the human experience) One more question if you don't mind. . . how will I know when it's time to move the Naso to a larger tank? Will he start acting unhappy? Signs of limited swimming, loss of appetite, etc.? <These behavioral changes are hard to discern, but yes, all the above> Also, off the current subject, I am just very frustrated and don't know where to turn. I love your website but frankly, I'm very new to this hobby (only about 9 months) and I don't know a lot about what I read. . .some of it is very confusing and hard to understand. So, where can I go to get some basic knowledge to help me understand and grow into learning this hobby? <Though it is supposedly shame-faced to do so, I will plug a worthwhile general (beginner-oriented) book on marine aquarium keeping of which I am the author: The Conscientious Marine Aquarist. Available from e-tailers, the large book-sellers, fish shops. Very worthwhile> Frustration also exists in the fact that there are so many conflicting opinions. For instance, last night I noticed a small spot on my maroon clown's fin that looked like fin rot. I went to your website and found basically conflicting opinions (in the chat room) regarding Melafix and Maracyn. These are the only two medicines that I know of at all. I decided to use Melafix (because it seemed to be a safer, more natural product and the fin rot is minimal) but then this morning searched the WetWebMedia and found where you say you don't recommend it so now I feel like I've done something horrible.  <Mmm, not horrible... Understand the nature of our sites as mere extensions of related human experience... There are many (different) humans, hence opinions... And that "Aquariology" is not altogether a "science", but art and "voodoo" as well... Embrace and revel in these differences (really).> What should I have done for the maroon clown (have I hurt the other fish in the tank that are not showing signs of fin rot?)  <I would likely have "done nothing" if just the one fish affected, one spot...>  and where can I go to get GOOD, solid information on treatment of diseases? <There are books on the subject (see Ed Noga's name on the Google Search), but with some general understanding of what diseases are ("The Three Sets of Factors..."), and good practice at picking out proper species, good specimens, some simple dip/bath and quarantine procedures, decent nutrition, regular aquarium maintenance, you are unlikely to need to know much or anything about "disease"> I trust you, Mr. Fenner, from all of the things I've heard and the books that you've written you are one of the few that I would trust. I just wish you could give out your phone number! :) When it's 10:00 p.m. and you don't know what to do for your fish it's frustrating! Please help and give me some guidance if possible. I apologize for being so longwinded but I just am at my wit's end. I love my fish and want to take the best care of them but I can't find a solid guideline to help me. Is there a book that you've written that's kind of a catch all for everything? <Ah, yes. TCMA> Thanks for your help! I appreciate you so much. <Glad to help my friend. Try to "step back" and enjoy your experience, even the apparent frustration, un-knowing... all will become clearer with time, experience, study, reflection, you'll see. Bob Fenner>
Re: Naso Tangs. . .
Thanks so much for your words of encouragement. And, no, it's not "shame-faced" to recommend your book -- I'm going to purchase it right now and am sure it will be a tremendous help! <Ahh, know you will enjoy, gain by the experience> In your opinion would you stop the Melafix treatment and just watch the maroon clown for a couple of days?  Or, would it be ok to continue the treatment through? It's an herbal remedy so can it really hurt anything? <I would hold off on further application. You could add a cleaner organism, supplement all the animals feedings with vitamins, other supplements, but likely all is/will be fine w/o the Melafix> Isn't fin rot rare in saltwater -- I thought it was mainly a fresh water disease so maybe I have misdiagnosed?  <Lots of possibilities... "fin rot" as in fungal or bacterial involvement in marine systems is very rare as a "first order" involvement... these decomposing events are almost always a result of system "collapse", post-death...> None of her fin is missing it just looks a line as been drawn across her fin and from that line down (just a small portion) is brown and looks thin. She still uses it and it's not folded to her side or anything. I don't think any other fish are "picking" on her. . . she holds her own quite well and seems very happy (not hiding or anything). She also does something that I don't know if it's normal for clowns or not...she takes her tail and whips it around in the sand making a big sand storm (she only does this in the evening though) -- she just recently (a month or so) starting doing this. . . is this normal especially since there is no anemone in the tank for her? What is she doing? <Please read over the WWM site re Anemones and Clowns: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/clwnfshanefaqs.htm > Thanks for letting me bother you again. . . you must really love this hobby to put up with ALL of our questions! :) Take care. <For love of the planet, our species, myself am glad to share. You will do the same. Bob Fenner>
Re: Naso Tangs. . .
Hello again. . .one more quick question if you don't mind. I took your advice and decided to stop the Melafix treatment. However, Monday when I had administered the Melafix I had obviously turned off the skimmer. Last night I turned the skimmer back on and it went crazy. It pumped out constantly and never seemed to stop. After about two gallons I decided to turn it off. Should I use some carbon (ChemiPure) to get the Melafix out and leave the skimmer off for two or three days? <A good idea, yes> Would this be harmful to my fish?  <No, more beneficial> I just administered one dose (10 teaspoons of the Melafix) so it should be out in a few days, right? <Not necessarily... the skimmer is/has removed quite a bit, the activated carbon will remove most all remaining> Also, regarding the vitamins. . . should I be giving them vitamins (VitaChem) as regular routine or only once in a while or when needed? <Yes, once a week to the water, as often as you'd like to their foods> Thank you so much for your help! Have a wonderful day!!!! By the way, bought your book and love it! :) Loving this hobby again thanks to you! Elizabeth <A pleasure my friend. Life to you. Bob Fenner>

Brown/Black spots on tang I have a problem with the tank and am not sure what to do. My LFS recommends using Greenex but I have read of awful "happenings" using this stuff on your website. It doesn't sound like you recommend it. <cure or kill solution... usually the latter> I went home for lunch today and my Naso Tang has very light brown/black spots all over him. It does not resemble black ich. They are not round spots. It's hard to explain. . . never seen anything like it before. I tested the water and it is perfect. He is acting fine -- eating well and swimming. What should I do? Do you recommend anything to try or just watch it for a day or so? No other fish show these signs. . . I'm at a loss. Please help. . . . <sounds like Turbellid worms. Hard to cure but slow to kill fish. A bare QT tank for 2-4 weeks with formalin and occasional freshwater dips would be best for this before it spreads to other fish (mostly tangs, butterflies and angels)> Thanks! <quite welcome. Anthony>
Naso Relapse...
Anthony, I have a feeling I'm going to wear out my welcome,  <no worries, my friend> but unfortunately I am in need of some advice yet again. I used the search option on your web page but could find very little info about my new problem. If you remember we have been going back and forth about my blonde Naso, which became ill over the weekend. Well since the transport into a QT, and subsequent treatment with Greenex which started on Monday, his ich cleared up, his appetite increased and the gilling ceased. In fact he was looking very good, up until last night. The ich has come back, which isn't a big problem I was expecting that.  <indeed> The new problem is that the poor guy now has cloudy eyes. To be exact it looks like there is a kind of film which has coated the eye. Also he refused food, both last night and this morning.  <secondary infection or response to the aggressive Greenex treatment> I searched on WetWebMedia.com for any articles relating to this. Really all I found were articles relating to exophthalmia, which he definitely doesn't have. There is zero swelling around the eyes. <agreed> I set up the quarantine tank using water from the main display. So my thinking is that whatever was in the main display, to cause his sickness in the first place, is still there making him sick.  <the water was appropriate... the fish is immuno-compromised and brought it in on his, er... person> I was hoping that treatment would help this. Could this be a side infection, initiated by the ich weakening his immune system?  <either or both> Is this yet another type of protozoan infection? Is there anything I can do, outside of a quick water change, to aide him? Should I do anything? <I still rank freshwater dips above all including Greenex> I realize this is a lot of questions. But since I'm not out of the woods yet, I was hoping you could help point the way. <no trouble... a common problem. Naso may still be quite fine in a week. Easy on that Greenex please. It is cure or kill.> Thank you, Michael Mariani <best regards, Anthony>

Naso Tang Quick question. Today I noticed that my Naso tang was breathing really heavy and was not eating. The other fish look to be doing fine and so do the xenia, mushrooms, and buttons. Checked the water parameters and everything seems fine. I am running a skimmer in the sump and two power heads in the tank so they should be getting enough oxygen. Don't know what to do? Please give me some suggestions <the fish may be showing the early stages of a serious parasite infection that has started in the gills. Please consult our section on Wet Web Media on quarantine tanks for preparedness. If this fish needs medication it will need to be done in a QT tank to be effective and to spare poisoning your biological filter and calcareous media. Best regards, Anthony>

Cause for alarm? (Naso Tang) Hello Bob (or whoever is filling the shoes today), About 2-1/2 weeks ago, I moved a Blond Naso into my main tank. After about 5 minutes, the Tang started darting around the tank (lights off) and smashing into rocks and the glass.  <Not atypical behavior> After about 45 seconds of this, he settled down, and hid in the darkest corner he could find. He would venture out every now and then, sampling the live rock, and all else appeared well. The following day, the Tang had developed several white "scratches" about 1mm wide and 4-5mm in length, all running horizontal. I had pretty much attributed this to the "run-ins" it most likely had with the various rocks in the tank. <Agreed> The scratches worsened over the next 3 days, covering the lower and rear third of its body, and he started to refuse food. None of the scratches appeared to be open wounds, thankfully. Not noticing any obvious external parasites, I played the waiting game, and ordered some Tang Heaven from the folks at IPSF, to coax the Tang into eating again. After 3 days of not eating, the Tang began to sample the Tang Heaven, but only consuming some. His stomach started to fill-in again, which I took as a sign of improvement. The whitish scratches began to fade, as well as about another third of his body, and the Tang took on a very light whitish-gray color. I started to worry about the possibility of an outbreak of velvet, but chose instead to "wait and see". No further external signs presented themselves over the next few days. Today, a week after the introduction of the Tang Heaven, he has started accepting Selcon-soaked flaked Spirulina again, and constantly grazes on the Tang Heaven, live rock, snails, etc. I am taking this as a good sign, but I am not convinced of being 100% out of the woods yet. None of the other inhabitants show any visibly noticeable signs, and are acting as they always have. I was wondering if you might have any suggestions for anything I have overlooked. Obviously, I refuse to induce any unwarranted stress on the Tang, but I would hate to lose him to something I might have overlooked. (Picture attached) And now, for the ever important tank information: 190 gallon, 2x99 DAS filtration units with skimmers. (Changing over to sump and EuroReef within 2 months). pH 8.3, Ammonia 0, Nitrite 0, Nitrate 5ppm, Phosphates <.2, Alk 10, Temp 80F. 1100gph and 700gph powerheads for water movement, coupled with the DAS return pumps (2000L/hr each). 15 gallon water change weekly, plus top-off. Lighting 2X400W 12000K MH (8 hrs/day) supplemented with 2 NO Actinics (10 hr/day). Kalkwasser drip to maintain Calcium around 400. 100 pounds live rock (more on the way soon), 40 pounds aragonite, 120 pounds live sand (more on the way soon, as well). Other Tank Inhabitants: 1 Chocolate Ocellaris, 1 Red-Lip Blenny, 1 Lawnmower Blenny, 1 Dragon Goby, 1 Scooter Blenny, 2 Engineer Gobies, 2 Cleaner Shrimp, 2 Peppermint Shrimp, 2 Sand Sifting Stars, 3 Brittle Stars, 2 Anemone crabs with appear to have hosted with the 2 flame scallops, 3 Sally Lightfoots, and 4 emerald crabs who "live" underneath a long tentacle anemone (fed a whole shrimp twice weekly), 3 dozen assorted snails, a half dozen scarlet reef hermits, as well as (I know you won't like these) a cucumber, and a long-spine purple urchin. There, I think that's everyone. Corals: 3 varieties of mushrooms (identifying), anthelia polyps, another polyp I am trying to identify, as they are overtaking one of the rocks, a coral elegance, a green brain, and a Porites covered in Xmas tree worms. Feeding done with DTs every other day, coupled with Coral Heaven for spot-feeding. Thanks again for your assistance, not only for me, but for all of us in the hobby!-Jim I neglected to include one parameter in my last email:  Salinity:  1.025 -Jim <Thank you for this detailed report of your success. Your being patient, observant and pro-active in your food offerings has saved your Tang. Bob Fenner>

Surgeonfishes: Tangs for  Marine Aquariums
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