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FAQs about Yellow Tang Disease/Health 5

FAQs on Yellow Tang Disease: Disease 1, Disease 2, Disease 3, Disease 4, Disease 6, Disease 7, Disease 8, Yellow Tang Disease 9, Yellow Tang Disease 10, Yellow Tang Disease 11, Yellow Tang Disease 12, Yellow Tang Disease 13, Yellow Tang Disease 14, Yellow Tang Disease , & Paravortex/Black Spot Disease,
FAQs on Yellow Tang Disease by Category: Diagnosis, Environmental, Nutritional, Trauma, Pathogenic (infectious, parasitic), Social, Genetic, Treatments

Related Articles: Yellow Tangs

Related FAQs: Best Yellow Tang FAQs, Yellow Tangs 1, Yellow Tangs 2, Yellow Tangs 3, Yellow Tangs 4, & Yellow Tang FAQs: Identification, Behavior, Tang Behavior, Compatibility, Selection, Systems, Feeding, Reproduction, & Purple Tangs, Striped Sailfin Tangs, Zebrasoma Tangs, Zebrasoma Identification, Zebrasoma Behavior, Zebrasoma Compatibility, Zebrasoma Selection, Zebrasoma Systems, Zebrasoma Feeding, Zebrasoma Disease, Zebrasoma Reproduction, Surgeons In General, Tang ID, Selection, Compatibility, Systems, Feeding, Disease, Fish Worms Diseases

Surgeonfishes: Tangs for  Marine Aquariums
Diversity, Selection & Care

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by Robert (Bob) Fenner
Sick yellow tang  10/24/06 What's up, <The sky?>     I have a 55g FO with 20 g sump, remora pro, and Eheim 2227 canister wet dry, I use carbon once a month for a few days. Recently (within the last 3 months) my yellow tang's fins started to wear. <Evidence of "poor water quality" most likely... secondarily lack of nutrition> It started around the edges and now has worn even more. My parameters are 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, <10 Nitrate, I do biweekly 10 g water changes. After I notices this getting worse I figured it was fin rot or HLLE <... but from what cause/s?> and added a refugium to grow algae to feed him, <Ah, good!> I also began feeding seaweed salad daily and treating his food with Vita Chem and really have not seen an improvement, in fact I think it has gotten worse. I would appreciate any advise on the type of disease this is and how to treat it. I have attached the URLs of a bunch of pictures of the fish for identification. Any help would be greatly appreciated, thanks in Advance <Mmm... there's much more to improper water values than nitrate measures... You have a good skimmer, a functioning refugium... This may be HLLE... or? Have you read the Yellow Tang FAQs files on Disease: http://wetwebmedia.com/ytangdisfaqs.htm Please do, and the linked files archived and indexed there above and in-text. Bob Fenner>

Yellow tang turning white  10/1/06 Hiya I have a new 125 gal. set up for about 8 weeks now. all the numbers are right on. I have added a yellow tang to my tank with my other fish, which are 2 blue damsels 1 tomato clown and 2 small blue damsels with yellow tails. All the small fish seem to be doing good. My questions is about the yellow tang he is turning white at the end of the day. I have increase feeding to 3 times a day and have also purchased green algae sheets and add them. Is this something to be concerned about? What is causing this? If this is a problem what can I do to prevent this? <Tangs along with many other fish can change colors/intensity for many reasons, but often it's due to mood. Stress may be the reason so be sure to double check all your parameters. Make sure you're tank is not seeing large swings in temp and ph over a 24 hour period etc. Have you observed any aggression, hiding, sulking etc etc etc. Keep your water quality up and observe your fish...be prepared to take action if things get worse.> Also need to tell you I had a Naso tang he lasted only 6 days. <Yipes! Are you quarantining these new arrivals? http://wetwebmedia.com/QuarMarFishes.htm> Please help me Thanks Ron <Best of luck. Emerson>

Tang with Parasites - 8/9/2006 I have recently acquired a salt water tank already set up with a yellow tang, yellow belly damsel, percula, and a coral banded shrimp. <<Is the tank large enough for a tang? Nothing smaller than 6-feet will do in my opinion.>> The first few days everything seemed "normal" (granted this is the first salt water tank I've had) and I gathered that the tang has his territory, the shrimp his, and the percula has his while the damsel just swims about. The previous owners seem to have abandoned the tank and it is very dirty and there was only one small live rock and a small fake anemone for the animals to hide and roam. I'm not sure if they were even being fed. I've added a few more hiding places for them and plan on adding another live rock or two. <<You should look into 1-2 pounds per actual gallon.>> My problem is that for the last two days the tang swims backwards *all* the time. I mean he'll dart from one end of the tank to the other tail first. He seems to be freaking out about something... swimming on his side at times, his fins always puffed out except when he's swimming backwards. It seems like he's trying to scratch his dorsal fin on the rocks! <<Sounds like a much stressed animal to me.  What are your number readings for ammonia, nitrIte and nitrAte?  The scratching makes me believe an external parasite is present here.  Do you see any white flecks on the fish?  Look on the fins especially.>> And tonight I've noticed that it seems like the shrimp is attracted to him... I'm not sure what he's trying to do to the tang but he's trying to climb on him or maybe clean him??? I'm not sure. And what's weird to me is the tang is allowing it for the most part. His coloration seems normal and I don't see any spots or fin tears or anything. I haven't changed anything in the tank other than adding two hiding places (rock and a fake seaweed). What is wrong with my tang? Is this normal behaviour? <<The behaviour of the cleaner shrimp confirms to me that an external parasite is present.  The tang is allowing the cleaner to pick them off, and is common, normal and beneficial.  You need to address the parasite issue however.>> I'm very worried about my fish. <<I understand. Please read on WWM to ID the parasite here, and to knock it out before it gets too bad. Tangs are notorious for ick, and I'd bet that's what you have hear.  Treatment is detailed throughout the site.  Good Luck. Lisa.>>

Yellow Tang fins locked in upright position... mostly   8/4/06 Good morning to all, <Mike> My yellow tang is not fairing to well.  Two weeks ago I noticed some pale coloration on his tail section along with a sandpaper type texture on both sides of tail just in front of the keel. <Good observation, bad signs>   After noticing this I started soaking all foods (Nori, Mysis, bloodworms, flakes) in Zoe. <Good move>   Two days ago I noticed his dorsal fins erect and they have remained that way as of this email.  I currently have a four line in my 20gal QT, so I decided to put the tang in the DSB refuge so as to at least separate him from everyone else ( the guys a my LFS said it should not be contagious). <... most likely not>   I've read on one of the FAQs that an erect dorsal is a sure sign of impending death, <Mmm, no... most marines have more or less permanently erect unpaired fins... and for FW, the generality is reversed> am I too late for any type of treatment?  He usually lives in a 150gal reef with two 250w MH, 250lbs of LR, ammonia nitrites and nitrates are 0, salinity is 125, calcium is 420, and alk is 9.3.  His tank mates are 7 blue-green Chromis, flame angel, dragon goby, cinnamon clown, fridmani, 4 cleaner shrimp, and 50 or so snails and hermits.  If he is inoperable, would a Naso be an appropriate replacement in a system my size? <A 150, 6 foot long tank will/would work for a period of time> Given my current stock, how bout a BF - is it a toss up between a Copperband and a pyramid? I have a frogspawn, leather, and about 20 SPS corals. <... Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ytangdisfaqs.htm the linked files above, elsewhere on WWM re the animals you list above... Bob Fenner>

Tangs/Health...Little Or No Info To Answer ... Crap English, no useful info.! James... just send/t back for corr.  8/2/06 hey guys, i have a major problem. yesterday my yellow tang was fine, I started feeding him sea veggies. this morning, he is leaning on a rock, he is not moving, but still breathing. i have had him for 2 months now. there are no black, brown or red spots. his fins are lighter in color than normal. my water is normal. please help me Please correct grammar, punctuation before sending.  Read here please. http://www.wetwebmedia.com/faqstips.htm Need more information than you are providing.  "Water is normal" is not of much help.  Do read here and related links above also.   http://www.wetwebmedia.com/Tangdisease.htm James (Salty Dog)>

Tang in a Sticky'¦.err'¦Rocky Situation 07/04/06 Hello Fellow Aquatic Gods, <Where'¦.I don't see any!> You guys have bailed me out so many times, I can't thank y'all enough.  I don't expect to get a reply being a U.S. holiday and all, but I'll try anyway. <I worked on Christmas why not the 4th?> I had a yellow tang emergency earlier tonight and need some advice. <Okay.> I have a 100 gal <Cool.> FOWLR that's about 10 months old that is progressing very, very nicely. <Awesome'¦> I have a beautiful 5" yellow tang that I added to the main tank about 3 weeks ago (yes - AFTER a 30 day quarantine). <Kudos to you.> She eats well and is a very friendly fish and not at all skittish. <Very nice.> I'll save you the long story and get to business.   <Music to my ears.> Earlier tonight she got herself wedged into a deep crater-like crevice in my live rock. <An uncommon occurrence'¦Ouch!> I'm not a rocket scientist, but I know when a fish is stuck, and she was stuck hard. <Sorry to hear that.> I had to dismantle 40 lbs of rock to get to her.  She was struggling with all her might to get free, but couldn't do it.   I tried as gracefully as I could to free her, but I ultimately had to just grab her and pull.   <I understand'¦> I pulled from the caudal fin, and it required a good bit of force to get her out of there.  I felt  horrible having to do it, but  it was the last resort as everything else seemed futile. I put the rock back together (tomato clown has to find a new rock to live in) and have been watching the tang for the last hour or two (say hello to murky, cloudy water!). <Do a very large water change and run some fresh carbon.>   She appears to be swimming okay  and seems active.  When I pulled her out, I swore she scraped the rock pretty hard, but she doesn't show  any visible signs of trauma or distress.       <Surprising indeed but nice to hear.> Now to my question:  do you have any recommendations? <Maintain pristine water quality, observe with detail and provide a nutritious 'varied diet'¦.business as usual unless something shows up'¦.> Is there any preventive treatment I should take or am I just being overly paranoid? <After instances of such stress and trauma, I usually recommend QT for at least 2 weeks, to allow the specimen to be isolated and recover without intrusion of other fish but it seems unwarranted from your description of the animals behavior and state.> I could stick her back in quarantine, but I don't really want to stress the poor thing out anymore. <Agreed 'for the time being.> Any feedback would be appreciated, especially since this is the first time this has happened to me. <Sounds like you are on the right track.> Thanks for your ongoing support!!! <Anytime.> drew <Adam J.>

Sick Yellow Tang... system, lack of info. Dear WetWeb Crew, I have a yellow tang that has recently started looking pretty skinny, his ribs have started showing clearly and he looks thin and bony.  A few days ago I saw him stuck against the filter where it sucks in water. <A very bad indication>   I moved him but he did not seem quite healthy, so to stop him from getting stuck again <Intake screening?> I put him in a net that hangs over the side of the tank (it is rectangular with plastic supports).  The next day he was lying on his side and his back was in a downward arch from his nose to his tail.  I cut out a piece of plastic from a tank divider and used it to keep him upright.   <?> At first he just leaned against it but after a day of this his sat upright again himself.  I noticed him trying to swim so I let him out of the net, but the water just pushed him around, so I put him back in.  Now he just sits there with his nose pointed slightly up and every once in a while he moves his fins, although he doesn't exactly swim. <Too late...>   If I bump the net he'll wiggle his fins and move around a little.  He can sit upright himself now so I moved the plastic support.  Nothing appears wrong with him except that he's gotten skinnier in the past few weeks and there is also a small lump wear I think he's supposed to go the bathroom.  I don't know if this was here before or if it's normal, he might just have to go.  Because he looks fine (other than the skinniness) I think he's sick inside.  Maybe he's constipated or has parasites?  This is my first saltwater tank and I have lost many other fish, though none recently.  When my coral beauty died a while back I noticed she also laid on her side and had an arched spine. <... you have something amiss here. Could be a lack of nutrition, poor water quality... possibly a parasitic issue...> I don't know if this is at all relevant.  Anyway, my tang has not appeared to get any better or worse.   As of now he seems okay except that I don't think he's strong enough to swim in the tank yet (he's not even swimming around inside the net).  He doesn't seem to be getting much better (or worse) and I was wondering if there was any way that I could help him?   <Not possible to tell with the information presented> I don't know what is wrong with him, other than he is not swimming well and is weak, so I don't know how to help him.   He doesn't seem terribly sick and I really think he'll live if I could help him, but I don't know what to do.  Can you please help me to help my fish get better?  Thank you!  Oh and I've included pictures but I don't think they'll be much help because it doesn't really look like there's anything wrong with him.  Thanks again! ~Kim <Uh... where's the useful information... re your set-up, history, water testing, foods/feeding...? Bob Fenner>

- Yellow Tang Problem 6/15/06 - Hi Bob, <JasonC here today in his stead.> I've been reading up on the information you provide, you are so very helpful, I've used your advice many times but this time I cant find anything similar and it doesn't seem to be disease related. Would you be able to help me please. <I will do my best.> I'm having a problem with my yellow tang.  He seems happy enough, although I think he might want to join the clown fish and their Anemone.   His top and bottom fin seems to be chopped.  I've had a good look, they seem to be folded / rolled up.  There aren't any other markings, or damage to him. I can't see what might have done this to him, or how he could have damaged himself.  I'm really worried. We have a 120 gallon tank and 15 gallon sump.  The water is good, all readings are really low, the phosphates are a little high, so I have a few tuffs of algae about, but working on removing that.  I have 3 red hermits, a few dozen blue blue hermits, turbo snails.  Unfortunately my lovely cleaner shrimps died.  I'm looking at replacing them, but dare not until the water is perfect and I've re-added my other fish from quarantine.   I'm not sure of the breed of clown fish, one is black and white, the other is orange, black and white.  They are both big, lovely and friendly. Two green Chromis and three blue/yellow damsels.  Two mushrooms and two bubble anemone.  Both Anemone are positioned well away from each other and the clowns love both equally.  I have a couple of soft corals which hitched a ride with the live rock and also seem to be doing fine. The reason my fish are in quarantine is they are still suspect of Ich.  My partner purchased two regal tangs which unfortunately brought Ich with them.  My clowns escaped it, the yellow tang had a few tiny ones on his side fins and the others also had a couple.  I fresh water dipped all the fish and then quarantined them. I treated the quarantined tank with eSHa Trimarin and the main tank with eSHa Oodinex.  I continued this for 2 weeks.  I then water cycled the main tank, this is when I think I caused my lovely shrimp to die.  I moved the clowns and yellow tang back into the main tank. Three weeks on, the other fish seem fine now also, so they will be going back in the main tank this weekend.  The Regals never made it through the quarantine stage. The reason I have given the past two month history is to help with why the yellow tangs fins are folded, as he came away from the Ich fine.  Could the anemone be stinging him when he's sleeping? <He'd have to be sleeping very close to the anemone which is unlikely.> Some kind or chemical warfare at night. <Doubt it.> I hope you can help me. <I'd just add some quality vitamins like VitaChem and give things some time. It's quite difficult to be certain how such things happen - suffice to say, if there's no aggression that you can observe, the damage then is a past event, perhaps brought on my stress during all the quarantine and treatment. Give it time and with some luck and care, the fins will grow back.> Thank you Lindsey <Cheers, J -- >

Ich and Tangs Part II 6/5/06 One more question on treating my Yellow Tang, in re-reading over info on your site, I found the following response to treating a tang with copper. "<However, a standard aquarium copper remedy, used in accordance with manufacturer's instructions, is very effective. Avoid long-term use of copper with tangs, as it could damage their digestive fauna>" Is 4 weeks too long? <Most likely ok.>  I have one more fish to catch ( my Falco Hawkfish) then all fish will be out of my reef and it can go fallow for 2 months. The tang has been in the QT with CopperSafe for almost a week now. If I put the Hawkfish in there tonight, and wait 3 weeks, the Tang will have been in copper for 4 weeks. Is this too long? <Probably fine, but do watch carefully.> Should I remove him and put him elsewhere in another week or will 4 weeks be Ok? <Will probably be fine, but if possible I would treat separately.  Probably an overly cautious approach, but once the Hawkfish is added you need to treat fully again since Ich will be reintroduced to the QT and if the tang begins to suffer options will be limited.> On a side note, my canary fang blenny is eating much more aggressively in the QT tank... (no LR to pick at, he got hungry and decided he likes Mysid shrimp!) <Excellent, a small positive to the QTing process.  Something to help carry you through the seemingly endless weeks before you can start restocking the tank.> Thanks again, Mike <Chris>

Yellow Tang Swim Bladder?    6/4/06 Hi there.  Thanks for providing us with the undisputed best-informed aquaria Q and A site on the net! <Welcome> To my question.  I have been running my 120 for about a year and a half.  My water parameters are all right where they need to be.  I have my "limit" of fish for this tank, probably even a little more so.  I have a Yellow Tang that has been looking very healthy, bright yellow, active, no spots or outward signs of disease.  He's been around since the beginning.  All of the sudden today, he is struggling to swim upright.  (I know an "uh-oh" will be entered here).  He gets a variety of food including Spirulina, Mysis, brine shrimp, etc.  But have neglected to give any Spirulina soaked in garlic for a couple months.  (disease prevention).  When I fed tank today with garlic soaked Spirulina he uprighted himself long enough to make some dashes for the food and did eat.  Now, hours later, he resumes swimming mostly nose down like a Butterfly feeding. <Bad sign> Then tilts to upside-down and then rights himself.  But for the most part is just nose-down hovering above live rock and sometimes my carpet anemone. <This could be the cause> I thought maybe he was hanging around that because everyone would leave him alone in that space.  But no one is messing with him as sometimes fish do when they sense, "fish almost dead" syndrome and therefore cannibalism sets in.   He has no ick or other sign of stress or disease.  I did install halides within this past week.  Went from 636 watts PC to 865 watts (3 175 HQI plus 2 130 watt actinics)  5 ft. tank.   <Shouldn't be a problem> Other fish seem absolutely fine.  Ricordea looks great with new lighting.  A few months ago I lost a Perc. clownfish to same thing I think, swim bladder. At least, he was doing the same thing.  Swimming around upside down struggling to right itself. <Mmmm> The HQI's do have a "pane" of glass as a shield.  Would this be effective against UV? <Should be... to protect you> Could lighting/UV problem be a cause for Tang problem? <Mmm, doubtful> I think other fish would show similar symptoms if problem was facing them all the same.  I am leaning towards lack of greens or just bad luck.  But looks great otherwise.  Help please. Jason <I would expand the diet to include algae here... either grown or purchased. Bob Fenner>

Yellow Tang, Discoloration.    6/4/06 Hello, I am in a rush, as I am very stressed about my situation, however I wanted to thank your for such a great effort at maintaining such a vast knowledge filled site. I am new to the Marine hobby, but thanks to your website I seem to know more about Marine fish than the LFS. <Heeeee... there comes a time...> I have a yellow tang. When the lights go off he turns quite pale. <What they do...> I understand this is normal in certain fish during the night, however tonight when I came home to turn off the lights he was pale, and breathing heavily, I checked the water parameters. The parameters in my 55 gallon were  ammonia 0 nitrite 0 Nitrate 30-35. <This last a bit high... as you're likely aware> Right now Im doing a 20% water change.  He appears to have dust like stuff on his body. Im afraid this might be some sort of disease. <Possibly... How long have you had this fish? No other non-quarantined livestock added since...?> I moved him out of the tank and am going to read about freshwater dips in case I might need to perform one. How do I know exactly if this is marine velvet. or just something similar. <Sufficiently similar that is hard to make out w/o microscopic examination at times... velvet is much smaller, regular in appearance, looks like dusting... rapid onset, very quick, labored breathing comparatively... and importantly, infests all> Any leads and advice would be appreciated. Just in case you need to know. There is one ocellaris clown, green Chromis, hermit crab and a turbo snail. All seem find except for yellow tank. Thank you, and Im sorry if my grammar is inappropriate. <... Do take a read on WWM re Marine Parasitic Disease... You may have nothing going on here... particularly if the other fishes are not affected. Bob Fenner>
Re: Yellow Tang, Discoloration.  6/5/06
Hello, This time I am not as rushed and I have a big smile because Mr. Fenner actually wrote to me, its one thing to read the faq's, but its another to open an e-mail from the crew. I isolated the yellow tang in a makeshift hospital tank (used a 5 gallon bucket I had in the closet) I added an aerator and a heater and I feel like I accomplished something because he is still alive 36 hours later. I did one freshwater dip with out Methylene blue because at the time no LFS was open to purchase Methylene blue, today I went looking for it and no LFS was carrying the item I wanted so I purchased a form of copper because I heard that it was much better than malachite green. I administered a little under the recommended dose because I was afraid to overdose. The tangs breathing has decelerated. The onset of the white specs was very rapid 5 hours . It seemed to me to appear more like Ich than velvet, now that I have read more. No other livestock in the tank have any symptoms of the same kind. All are eating and swimming just fine. I really hope I don't have any parasites, as I was just at the point of upgrading to an aqua c pro and purchasing some live rock and new livestock. <I would proceed with your plans... Again, to re-emphasize: if your other fishes show no signs of a pandemic, I strongly doubt you're dealing with such here> If it is Ich I plan on removing the inhabitants to a separate 10 gallon quarantines and leaving the main display fishless for 6 weeks. Must I remove the hermit and snail also, for the parasite to subside? <No> If the other inhabitants have no symptom, what could this mean? <Could be "simply" stress affecting just the Yellow Tang... it might have an internal complaint, genetic/developmental anomaly, cumulative nutritional issue...> Any suggested course of action would be greatly appreciated. Once again thank you so much for being such a great help to all hobbyists. Sergio <"When/where in doubt do nothing"... good advice for aquarists, individuals in their own lives, families, communities, nations and planets. Bob Fenner>

Yellow tang... health   5/28/06 Good evening crew, Upon arriving home after work this afternoon I noticed a problem with my yellow tang. I have had him for a year now, he is situated in a Juwel vision 260, 4ft long bow front, with several soft corals, 2 common clowns, 3 yellow tailed damsels, a pyjama wrasse, a Royal Gramma and 5 green Chromis, The tank is filtered by a deep sand bed and the nitrates at last check were less than 5ppm. salinity is 1.026 and temp. is 79. He seems to have the lost the ability to balance and is now lying down on the bottom breathing slowly, a few times he seemed to have shaken himself out of it but seems to be getting worse now. There are no outward signs of illness a few scars of HLLE but nothing major. I'm stumped, if he makes it through the night I'm going to by a hospital tank but then what? <Need to try bolstering this fish's immune system, nutrify it likely> Is it possible he was stung by my sea urchin? or bumped into it whilst browsing? wishing for the best will <Is possible... Along with my speculation re a long-term avitaminosis syndrome as a possibility... I would move this fish, administer a vitamin/appetite supplement to the water, encourage it to eat some new/er live rock algae, other human-nutrition/food algae. Bob Fenner> forgot to mention in previous e-mail: Feeding is Nori Mysis shrimp flake and recently Caulerpa prolifera has been added. I do have a protein skimmer, its a TMC v-skim model. Thanks again <Mmm, I do hope this Zebrasoma rallies. BobF>
Re: yellow tang  5/29/06
unfortunately it only survived a few hours after I emailed you. I am still stumped, everything else in the tank is healthy. Thank you very much for your time and advice anyway. Will <Thank you for this follow-up... there are many such "anomalous" losses in ornamental aquatics... Some species, groups much more than others... Impossible to point directly to a cause in most. Bob Fenner>

Marine fin rot? Tang in a Small Tank - 4/25/2006 Dear Crew, <<Hey Steve, this is Lisa.>> I have a 50 Gallon tank that has been running for 3 months. I have no measurable problems with water quality. Specific Gravity 1.021, PH 8.3 zero on ammonia nitrites and nitrates. I believe I have a small biological load, one purple dotty back, two small clowns about 1 inch long and a goby. <<This is about right for your tank.  Another small fish would fit too.>> I introduced a Yellow tang about two weeks ago and now I seem to have problems. <<That tang gets FAR too large for your tank.  You will have to re-house it in the near future.  Did you add it without quarantine?>> There seems to be something affecting the fish with what I can only describe as fin rot.  Is this a common ailment in Marine fish? <<Is usually a sign of an environmental problem.  Is there any aggression in the tank?>> And could you recommend any treatment. <<Keep water quality pristine with large water changes and skimming, and remove the tang ASAP.>> I have tried searching WWM site but can't find anything that clearly describes my problem. Many thanks in advance Steve <<Glad to help. Lisa.>>

Sick yellow tang    4/9/06 Hi I need some advice for my sick yellow tang. He is refusing to eat  anything due to an injury to his mouth <Very bad> and is just sitting and lying on his  side on the bottom of the tank, <Worse> although periodically having a swim round  the tank. I have treated the tank with stress coat to aid healing <Won't do this> is there  anything else I could use to help? I am concerned if he doesn't start eating  he will starve. Thanks Sarah Ford     <... not enough info. offered here to say. Please read: http://wetwebmedia.com/YellowTang.htm and the above, esp. the files/FAQs on Systems, Disease. Bob Fenner>

Spot on tangs face    3/31/06 Hi, <Good morrow> I have had a yellow tang for over six months, and have not added anything to the tank since. Everything is normal and acting as it should. Yesterday I noticed a white bump right between the eyes of the tang centered on it's face. The white bump is set right on a bone. The spot could be Ich, but to me it seems too large possibly being the size of 5 grains of salt combined. <And would be more numerous> But it is definitely a possible Ich spot, because I have seen Ich spots this big before on other fish (not in my tanks). when viewed straight on it has a blackish color in the center, and a white color on the outside. When viewing the fish's profile the bump protrudes out as far out as it is wide. It kind of looks like a popped pimple, having an indentation in the center of the spot. Although it does not really have the shape of a pimple, more so a round ball sitting on the fish. Everything in the tank has been stable, and to my knowledge there has not been any stressful events. So is this Ich or something else? <Likely resultant from a physical injury> So far my only course of action is to wait and see if it falls off, and if so quarantine and treat as needed. Thanks, Jed <Yes to your plan. Likely nothing pathogenic or "treatable". Bob Fenner>

Freshwater dipping Zebrasoma flavescens = bad... RO water, no oxygen, worse by far    3/27/06 PLEASE STOP ADVISING PEOPLE TO FRESHWATER DIP ZEBRASOMA FLAVESCENS FOR ANY REASON!!   These fish are very delicate <Mmm, no... on a relative scale, quite hardy> and I have now lost 2 to this process following the instructions on your website which I have found repeated in several threads to the "T" as I was trying to rid each one of the couple of black spot Turbellarians that they had. <... I have literally done this with hundreds of thousands of this species... Am out in HI on the Big Island where the vast majority of Z. flavescens are collected, "talked" many of the trop. collectors over the years into this procedure (pH-adjusted FW dips... with aeration...) to eliminate Crypt, Amyloodinium, Paravortex... it works, is safe...>   Each time the fish was placed into a well established QT tank for a week and each were doing fantastic eating sea veggies like there was no tomorrow.  I was planning on 4 weeks in the QT.  After the 6 min.s in the temp and pH adjusted bath using RO water, <... RO water has no oxygen....> the fish was dead.  This happened to 2 different fish at different times from different dealers and both fish were fantastic specimens.  The only reason I dipped is because your website said to do this to rid the fish of black spot which I did not want to introduce into my main.   <No oxygen> I also don't want to hear that the fish would have died anyways because observing each for a week beforehand in the QT tells me this is absolute rubbish regarding these two specimens.  Each died as a direct result of the bath.  Having wasted weeks of my time and effort and $70 of my money caring for these fish and to have them die in minutes following instructions on this website LEAVES ME EXTREMELY ANGRY!!!  I have found other post regarding this species from people who have had the same experience but the dip is still recommended.  Being such water quality bioassays, advising people to dip willy-nilly is ridiculous and reckless.  I should have stuck with my gut and allowed the fish to rid themselves of the 2 spots each had with quality water and food but I thought I could trust this site. <No oxygen... try holding your breath for six minutes and write me back. Bob Fenner>

Re: Tang Blues! (or should that be yellows!)   03/07/06 Hi Bob, I haven't had any parasite problems in my 125 gal.  The tank is fairly new, about 3 months but the fish I have in there are from my old 55 gal and they are all disease free and have been for the past year. <Mmm, strange to have such "spots" just pop up...> The tang is a new fish that I purchased and put in there after he was in quarantine.  Now that I have him back in quarantine I've noticed the white spots are spreading a little more on his tail fins.  He seems to be acting normal, though, great appetite, swims around, seems real happy!  This is what makes it confusing to me.  Obviously, I don't want to put him into the system with the other fish if he is diseased.  I would like to treat him if it is even a parasite problem.  I haven't had too much experience with tangs. <Mmm, well, they are proverbial "Ich magnets"... Best to look with a scope here, but I would likely begin a copper run...> I do appreciate your time! Geez I hope you have made it back to this wonderful state since '52!  It has changed quite a bit! <Heeee! Folks tell me it's largely a suburb of NY nowadays! Cheers, BobF> Mark

Yellow Tang/Disease? - 2/28/2006 Dear fellow yellow tang owners.  <Do not own one Sara.> I have a yellow tang that seems to have developed reddish lips in the last day or so.  I recently introduced a hippo tang and they fought for a bit but are not fighting any longer.  The yellow tang is still feeding and has not changed colour elsewhere. Could this be result of damage from fighting with the hippo tang? <Unlikely, they usually swat tails in aggression/defense.>  If so do I need to treat for a bacterial infection or just see how it goes. <May be an ulceration, hard to say without a pic.  I'd keep an eye on it for a while and if no improvement is made, then treat as you mentioned.  Do feed healthy vitamin enriched foods to aid the health of your tangs.  Do Google our website for tang feeding and disease.  James (Salty Dog)> Hope you can help me Sara

Paralyzed yellow tang and English  2/14/06 hello all at WWM, first off i would like to thank you for all the wonderful info i have found on you site.   i am relatively new to the reef keeping hobby and am having a blast learning about it. i have a 40 gal, with an Eheim 2213 canister, a hang on shimmer, 2x 94 watt pc's 1 daylight 1 actinic lights are on 11 hours, turbo twist3 UV sterilizer, and two small powerheads. i have about 35lb of live rock and 40lb of live sand water chem. reads PH - 8.3 ammonia  - <.025 nitrite - <.1 nitrate <10 so the problem is my yellow tang yesterday all seemed fine he swam around was eating fine, today i got up to find him in the corner just sitting there not moving. he seems to be breathing fine he's just leaning on a rock not moving. he doesn't have any signs of ick no spots around the gills. i just don't know what's going on. all other fish in the tank, 3 fire gobys , 2 percula clowns, 1 lawnmower blenny, seem fine. could he have eaten something i have a few zoo colonies 1 of which has some vegetation growing on it that he was munching on. the only other thing i could think of was that maybe he was stung, i have a torch coral and a few anemones, he could have gotten to close. i hope this is enough info and i hope you can help me thank you for your time <Nick, please do a spelling/grammar check and resend.  We just don't have the time to edit queries loaded with errors.  Thank you,  James (Salty Dog)> Nik

Yellow tang in QT  - 01/23/2006 Hope everyone is doing well. <Can't tell... but I seem fine> I've got a med. sized yellow tang in a 10 gallon QT.  The tank is filtered by a hang-on and I'm also using a power head for extra current.  Ambient light, bare bottom, a piece of PVC, and a heater complete my list.  When I got him from the LFS I didn't notice any visible trouble spots or markings on his body, and his behavior was easy going and curious.  After acclimation and a freshwater dip (12min.) <A long while> he went straight to the QT, all was well.  Two days into the quarantine I noticed two very tiny white spots, one on each of his pectoral fins.  I didn't think too much of it because the spots were so faint. A couple of days later I used a flashlight to get a better look and the spots were still there but were only noticeable from certain angles. His only erratic behavior is running his nose length wise across the tank which I'm assuming is a reflection type behavior.  Today makes 2 weeks and only one fin has a single dot on it.  The other fin looks spot free.  He is taking brine and Nori, and he swims around checking out what little there is to investigate.  My water param.s are all 0, Ph 8.2, specific gravity is 1.022, and I change two gallons every other day with main system water.  No meds have been introduced, should I keep on the same road or should I try to medicate that last remaining spot? <I would not be concerned re these spots... not likely pathogenic. If concerned, I might look into biological cleaners. Bob Fenner>

Stressed Yellow Tang - 01/03/2006 Hello, <Hi.> First let me acknowledge how great your site is. <Thanks!> My question is I have a 175 gallon tank with ideal salinity and pH levels. Recently I have noticed my Yellow Tang develop some fairly odd changes. <Uh-oh.> First one of his pupils has shrunken and turned yellow while the other remains the same as always kind of looks like Marilyn Manson with his wacky contacts. Second he has developed white racing stripes on each side of his body. <Well, the "racing stripes" are actually stress markings. This fish is not doing well. From your description it sounds like a bacterial infection is beginning to set in.> He acts extremely healthy and in fact has been a true survivor through my trails with this new hobby. <Seems to have finally taken its toll.> Currently I feed him frozen herbivore cubes as I was advised by the LFS, but upon reading your articles I have noticed they need a little more of a variety of veggies. Does this explain the strange transformation my fish is going through? <In part yes. Would also look to poor water quality as a factor (need more than good pH and salinity).> He shows no sign of being sick, <Is crying out for help now!> in fact he is extremely active and becoming more territorial towards his tank mates. <Likely related as well.> If it matters here is a list of his tank mates. Panther grouper, Porcupine Puffer, Coral Beauty, Many Damsels(5), Dwarf Lion fish, Royal Gramma, Foxface rabbit fish, and a pacific blue tang. The Yellow Tang is the largest of all the fish approx 3inches long. Any help You can offer will be greatly appreciated. <You're on the verge of a precarious situation here. Read and follow the links here http://www.wetwebmedia.com/toxictk.htm . Also study here http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ytangdisfaqs.htm and on through the links. - Josh>

Yellow Tang Disease, environmental Hello, <Hi there> We recently got an aquarium at my office.  We have a combination of 'starter' fish'¦a clown fish 'several small black and white striped fish 'some small blue fish 'and a yellow tang. <Sort of reads like Seuss eh?> The aquarium was set up then the boss didn't like the way it looked so the aquarium was changed around about a month later.  After the change, we started to notice that the yellow tang's eyes were bulging badly 'he also has two white spots by his tail 'one on each side.  He always kept eating but was hiding by a rock for about a week.  Now when we came back in today 'his eyes aren't bulging anymore 'they look a little bit bloodshot 'but he is swimming around much more. <Good... the previous symptoms were likely borne from the tank/system being new...> My main concern is that he has bubbles on all of his fins.  All of the other fish are completely fine.  I read your FAQ's previously about the bulging eyes so we kept a close watch and now he seems okay other than the bubbles on his fins and he seems to be using one side fin more than the other.  Please help 'we love this little guy.  The other people in the office may not care much but we love them so we will do what we can to help him. <These bulges also will likely go away of their own accord with time, good care. I would not "treat" the water, this fish as such. Cheers, Bob Fenner> Thank you!

Yellow Tang, Red Streaks - 12/22/2005 To Whom It May Concern: <Josh this morning.> Unfortunately over the last day my Yellow Tang whom I've had for about 4 months has formed what appears as internal bleeding or red lines at the top of its body. <Happens quite often.> Its still eating fine and swimming around as normal so no other noticeable symptoms. <Good.> I'm very worried of course and not sure what could be causing these symptoms? <Daniel, there are many possible causes of this condition. In general this is easy enough to correct. Most likely it is environmental water quality, stability) or dietary causes here. You've had this fish for 4 months, so I think that rules out shipping/handling stress. This could also be a secondary bacterial infection associated with the above causes/stresses. This places you squarely in the "wait and see" category. Your best option for now is to maintain optimal water quality and a vitamin rich diet (macroalgae, Nori...plenty to graze on). You can also soak these in a vitamin prep. to increase nutritional intake. Read here http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ytangdisfaqs.htm for further info.> My very best, Daniel. <Best of luck to you. - Josh>
Re: Yellow Tang, Red Streaks - 12/27/2005
Dear Josh, <At your service Dan.> Thank you so much for your help, it is so much appreciated! <Glad to offer it friend.> I just have some further notes on this case if possible for you to consider? <Sure!> My tang is looking much better now, I've been maintaining water quality every day and also supplementing food. <Very good news! Keep this up and I believe you'll have much "luck" with this fish.> However yesterday I noticed that my yellow-tailed blue damsel had almost 2 what seemed like bite marks in it's left side. Wasn't eating very well and this morning it has what seems like pop-eye in one eye only, thus I think suggesting trauma. <Yes, most likely. However, with the "sores" appearing first followed by the pop-eye and lack of feeding, I'd lean toward the possibility of secondary bacterial infection. Can this fish be removed to QT? I would place the fish in a quiet space for closer observation and reduced stress. Try offering a food that contains a broad spectrum antibiotic before adding medications to the water. Once again, optimal water quality will be your best friend here. Probably wouldn't cure mind you, but will do much to prevent further decline.>    My tank has the following fishes... Yellow-tailed blue damsel (about 6 months) Yellow tang (about 4 months) Flame Hawk (about 2 weeks) 2x tank bred false clowns (about 2 weeks) Do you think the Flame Hawk or clowns could be attacking it during the night? <Hmm...perhaps. They are recent additions and could be feeling a bit "froggy". By the way, how large is your tank? I don't believe we've ever covered that.> During the day all the fish get alone fine. I've moved all the rock around when they were introduced to get rid of any old protected sites. Usually all symptoms are noticed first thing in the morning suggesting night abrasions. <Usually? As in numerous times, or is this still a new development? Has the damsel been "awakening" from the same bed each day? Could be trying to find a spot each night and getting rejected.> My very best, Dan. <Hope all goes well. - Josh>

Ick and Formol  12/15/05 Dear Sirs Can I use Formol <A 40% solution of formaldehyde> to treat ick in a Yellow Tang? <Not safely> The dosage, 20 drops for eight litres is ok? This dosage is recommended for Discus and during one hour with good aeration. An alternative will be 3 drops for ten litres during 24 hours. Thanks in advance Best regards Flavio <Do be careful if you proceed... be in constant attendance, ready to remove the fish from this bath. Do also read re formalin/formaldehyde use and other means to treat Cryptocaryon posted on WWM. Bob Fenner>

Yellow tang - discoloring; disease, Photo Not Found (Where'd ya put it, James?)  11/30/05 Hello there. The usual set of congrats on the site and even more thanks. <You're welcome>  I recently acquired a yellow tang and several other fish under the situation of their owner attempting to kill them off before he moved to a new huge house. There was a massive rotting corpse of a tang on the bottom of the tank and all readings were beyond measurable. SG- off the bottom of my reader, nitrate, nitrite, ammonia levels would probably have killed me. <This person has no business having an aquarium.>  Of seven fish, I am down three, 3 ill (fungal as best as I can tell, being treated), and the tang that was, at least until recently, healthy spare starved (also a part of his little idea). In the attached, I tried to take photos to show the whitish/pale blotches that seem to be appearing underneath the skin/scales of the tang. The blotches are not uniform on each side and are still internal from all noticeable viewings.  <<There were photos that came with this email, has been inadvertently deleted, now cannot find.  My apologies.  Marina>> Fins are intact unlike the 3 that didn't make it suffering from extreme tail rot (1 yellow-tailed blue damsel, 1 black and white striped damsel (convict damsel?), and a poor tomato clown that was incredible friendly and I was attached to (had less tail rot, more "clownfish disease" (?) from what I could tell from WWM)).  The images may be a tad bright so if that is a nuisance, try darkening the screen; my camera has a bad habit of over exposing... let alone chasing a tang with a camera. Hope you can help out... skimmed through what I could of the diseases with no obvious luck. If I passed up something, by all means redirect me. We're rather attached to the fella and I'm not going to let something as stupid as pride get in the way.  <Ken, based on the looks of the tang, the fish are suffering from a terrible vitamin deficiency to start with yet alone very poor water conditions. I recommend religious 10% weekly water changes, good prepared foods such as Ocean Nutrition soaked in Selcon. Might try Ocean Nutrition's algae flake food...excellent product. I would start adding an iodine/iodide supplement also. James (Salty Dog)> With much due respect, Ken. 

Tang Seizures 11/25/05 We have a 55 gal tank and for a little over a month we have had a yellow tang. He was doing fine, but he is now reacting badly to the light.  He has no apparent spots. His diet consists of marine flake fish food and frozen which he is still eating. He has jerky, seizure-like movement that stops when the light is turned off.  We have live corals and invertebrates in the tank so leaving the light off for an extended period is pretty much out of the question. Any explanations or suggestions? <<It is hard to say what could be wrong. Did you quarantine the fish before adding him to the tank? The fish could be sick, reacting to toxins or reacting to a tank bully. Check all water parameters (ammonia and nitrite should be "zero" and nitrates should be low). Is there someone or something inside or outside the tank frightening the fish? Does the fish calm down after the lights have been on awhile? As long as the fish is eating you may have time to sort this out. Good luck - Ted>>

Poor Planning/Care and Fish Health Go Hand in Hand - 11/16/2005 In my 55 gallon I have a Yellow Tang (I know everyone says he should be in something bigger but I can't get anymore tanks) 2 perculas, bullet goby, and a cleaner shrimp. <First, it's I not "i", second apostrophes exist as do periods/capitalization; please use them. It helps all who read your query, as well as those who place it.> My yellow tang today was stuck to the filter. <Not promising for such a strong species.> I put him in his own floating container and he was falling over <Absolutely horrible indications for this fish, signs of stress to the max.>, but when I tapped on the glass he stayed straight up and didn't show any bad signs. <Aside from being near comatose?!> I tried to feed him but he won't eat. Do you have any ideas of what could cause this (he's fine now)? <No, he's not. Your water quality (which you've included no measure on param.s. what so ever) must be off. Aside from that, diet is likely off as well. Furthermore, how long have you owned this fish? What's your maintenance routine?>  I previously had a Sailfin who died before, but I wasn't planning on keeping him in a 55. <I hope you don't mean that as in "anyways". Please try to formulate a system around the fish you plan to keep. Your Tang is not doing as well as may outwardly appear at this moment. Try a large water change. Clean your filters and check your tank param.s. If you notice that he has constantly erect fins, then you're too late. - Josh> 

Paravortex "Black Spot Disease"  11/11/05 WWM Crew, Recently my Yellow tang showed signs of Black Spot Disease (little black dots covering its entire body) after a few days they were gone, and then a few days later they were back.  I hope my diagnosis was correct.  I followed Mr. Fenner advice from the book The Conscientious Marine Aquarist (great book) and gave the Tang a fresh water bath (pH adjusted & aerated) for 10 min and it did very well and knocked off all the black spots. <Good> After the bath I put it in a 20gal by itself.  Two weeks later there are no signs of Black Spots.  First question, how long should I keep the tang in the 20gal before putting it back into the main tank? <About another two weeks> Second question, how long will the Paravortex survive without a host? <A few weeks typically> Third, are my fish in the display tank (72gal bow) at risk for contracting the disease? Currently in the tank I have 1 Bicolor Angel 6" (doing very well contrary to reputation), 2 True Perculas (pair), 1 Lawn Mower Blenny, 2 Blue/Green Chromis, and 1 Yellow Tail Damsel. <Mmm, there is a possibility these fishes might act as "reservoir hosts"... Ideally, all would be processed per your Tang, isolated, the infested system allowed to run fallow for a month...> I practice good maintenance; all tanks (3) get a 10% water change twice a week and parameters are stable and were they should be.  Please lend me some advice, my Bicolor Angel misses the Tang and likewise for the Tang. They are good buddies. Thanks in advance, Bryan <Heeee! Soon to be reunited. A thought... adding a purposeful cleaner... perhaps a Lysmata Shrimp or a Gobiosoma goby... might add interest to your system as well as utility here. Bob Fenner>
Re: Paravortex "Black Spot Disease"  11/12/2005
Mr. Fenner, Thanks for the information. I guess I should have mentioned that I do have one Scarlet Skunk Cleaner Shrimp in the tank as well as a few soft corals, one Bubble Tip Anemone (opposite end of tank from corals), Black/Red star, and other hermits and snails.  <Ah, yes, thank you> I sure hope that the others are not acting as a reservoir host, they show no signs. The cleaner shrimp has been cleaning the Bicolor Angel regularly. He also cleans the Chromis too. I think I will leave the Tang out for another 3-4 weeks just to make sure. Thanks again. Bryan <If this doesn't work out (this time) it is not that big of a deal to "re-do"... Paravortex is not "very debilitating". Cheers, Bob Fenner> 

Yellow Tang with parasites... Uh, no  11/7/05 Hello, <Howdy> After looking over your website, I have not found anything to help me with my problem, so I am emailing you. I have a yellow tang that seems to have some sort of parasite problem. He has some HLLE, but I also think that he has some parasites. He is covered in red blotches. The red is not only around his head and lateral line, which leads me to believe that it is not only the HLLE. <Is related... both likely due to poor water quality, lack of nutrition> Additionally he has some small black dots on his body. <Oh, these may be Paravortex...> The other tank inhabitants are a dogface puffer, maculosus angel, volitans lion, and Soldierfish. None of these fish are afflicted with any malady of any sort. I dosed the tank with Coppermate several days ago, and am yet to see any recession of the tang's red blotches and black dots. <Mmm, won't with copper exposure> If you could help me identify a parasite that would cause this, and a treatment, it would be greatly appreciated. Thank you for your time, Joseph Marano <Please see WWM re the black Turbellarian "pest" more than parasite... otherwise, look to improved conditions, feeding to recover this fish. These issues are covered on WWM. Bob Fenner> 

Yellow Tang - strange behavior/sick? 11/4/05 This is my first time sending a message so I hope this works. (and Thank you in advance!) <Welcome> I've been reading all the comments on the website and some address a few of my concerns but no situation was quite the same so I thought I'd give this a shot. <Okay> I have a 90 gallon tank (90 pounds of live rock) and have had a yellow and purple tang for 3+ months. (also have 4 clowns, a lawnmower blenny, a goby and some snails... all seem "normal". All seems to be good but within the last 3 weeks, I've noticed my yellow tangs chest area seems to be a bit sunk in. I feed him flakes, frozen shrimp and algae sheets. <Needs more nutrition> His appetite was good until the last day or so. He is not eaten and seems to be struggling even to swim. He does more floating on his side and seems to be using all his energy. I thought I was going to lose him last night since he was laying on his side at the bottom of the tank all night but this morning he is again trying to swim. I can't stand to watch him suffer. I checked all water levels and even took a sample to the store and everything was good. He doesn't have any spots but his one side does seem to be a little more orange (like more red from the inside) than his other side. <Likely directly related to a lack of nutrition> Is there anything I can do to help this little fellow? Any assistance would be MOST appreciated. Thank you! <Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ytangfdgfaqs.htm - Bob Fenner>

Sick yellow tang 11/1/05 I have had my yellow tang about 6 months now (about 3 inches). Salinity is 1.022. Nitrates and ammonia are below detectable levels. Last night I went to adjust the time on the timers. The light cycled on and off while I did this. Next I noticed my yellow tang was rigid and seemed to be leaning on some coral. After a few minutes he was swimming normal so I figured I just stressed him out with the lights.  <Yes, not a good idea to play with lights, especially if they were off to start with.>  This morning he is on his side on the bottom and very rigid with fins extended and slowed breathing. I see no signs of discoloration or infection. In fact he looks exactly like normal. I am not sure what happened. His diet did not change, there were no new fish introduced - nothing has been touched in a week (last water change and cleaning). It all seemed to happen very sudden as if poisoned. Any ideas or suggestions?  <Chris, I'd leave the lights off for a few days to start with. It's quite possible the tang may have went into shock during your light testing. Need to be careful if using cleaners such as Windex around the tank. This is pretty strong in ammonia content. Other than that, wait a couple days and see if the tang's condition improves any. James (Salty Dog)> Thank you, Chris  <You're welcome>

Yellow Tang color fading - 10/28/2005 Please forgive me for emailing you directly, but I couldn't get any of the different pages on the website to work besides the Ich one, which had your email listed. <That's odd, but that's what we're here for.>  I recently started a saltwater tank for my little children to enjoy... <I hope you/they understand the responsibilities for this.> so we have a Nemo, a Germ fish, and a Bubbles. <<A "Germ" fish..??  Sounds so.. amorphous.>> <Proper, scientific names please.>  We've had them for about 3-4 weeks now...and Bubbles, the Yellow Tang, who was a brilliant yellow is now a very washed out yellow. <Not good at all.>  This has happened over the course of the last 2 days. <Good that you've taken notice so quickly.>  The other two fish are fine, and normal in appearances, its only Bubbles who has changed colors. He still eats fine, darts all over the tank and all. <If this is extremely erratic then you may have a big problem.>  I don't see any sort of spots on him, just that his brilliancy is gone, he's a very muted yellow now. I haven't been able to find any reference to this anywhere. Could you give me some advice on what could be wrong with him? <Without more tank details (size, param.s., etc.), I can't say much. Tangs will show stress signs more quickly than others, so something is definitely amiss. Most likely nutritional values are not being met. What do you feed? Erratic darting about could be poisoning of some sort (environmental, water quality) Read these http://www.wetwebmedia.com/sailfinfdgfaqs.htm  http://www.wetwebmedia.com/sailfindisfaqs.htm  > Thank you,  Andi Boyles  <You're welcome. - Josh>

Yellow Tang RIP 10/7/05 Hi Guys - <Jeff> Long time reader; first time caller. Love your website. It's great how patient and helpful your answers are. <Mmm, well mine are getting shorter and more terse> I really messed up and it cost me my yellow tang. I'm not really sure what I did, but I don't want it to happen again. Here's my story.  I had a yellow tang for about two months. I recently noticed some white flecks on his tails and fins. He was also flashing on some rocks and breathing a little heavily. I did some reading on WWM and figured that he might have Ich. I wanted to try and catch it before it got bad.  Yesterday night, I took some RO water, brought it up to the same temp as the tank, adjusted the PH with some baking soda. I put a airstone in the pail with the water and let it run overnight. The intent was to give the yellow a freshwater dip and that would hopefully take care of the Ich. My blenny has also been flashing, but wasn't showing signs of white spots. I figured better to be safe than sorry, so I wanted to give both fish a dip. Nobody else is flashing or showing signs of Ich, so I figured that the yellow was just susceptible to Ich and it was made worse with my water parameters a bit off (tank mates and parameters listed below - the others are a pretty hardy group). If this didn't work, I was going to take all of the other fish out of the aquarium and put them in my 20 gallon qt and let my main tank go fallow for a month. <... dipping the fish/es and placing them back into an infested system does no good> I spent about a 1/2 hour trying to catch the tang. It's really not easy catching a tang in a 70 gallon aquarium with 70lbs of live rock. I think he got tired and gave up in the end. I dropped him into the pail and he immediately swam around in the bucket. I caught the blenny a few seconds later and put him in too. A minute later the yellow was on his side. I got the net to fish him out, but he swam away from it, so I figured he was just 'hiding'.  I waited about 5 minutes and then went to put the tang back into the aquarium. He kind of half sank and half swam to the bottom. I put the blenny back immediately and he swam and hid in the rocks. I checked a few minutes ago and he's back in his favourite cubby hole and doesn't seem worse for wear. The tang sat in the sand for about an hour breathing quickly, but shallow and then expired. I took a look at his body and it didn't look like there were any Ich marks on it. Wow. So, I might have killed him for nothing. I'd like to know what I did wrong so that I can take some positive from the evening.  I'm going to hold off buying a new tang for at least a month.  <Uhh, use the 20 for a quarantine...> I'll make sure that nobody else is showing symptoms before I even consider getting another fish. <... likely died from stress... being chased about...> Is there something I missed? Should I not have done the dip? Are yellows just likely to die from shock? Any advice? When I get a new tang, should I do a fresh water dip before he goes into the QT? I'm scared of the same thing happening again.  <Please read on WWM re dips/baths, quarantine... the diseases of Zebrasoma flavescens> Here's some info on my setup: I recently purchased an RO filter. I only realized that my water parameters were messed up. The water hardness is waaaay too high and is throwing off my chemistry. I've been doing 10% water changes a week to try and fix things. <Good> Tankmates 30ish blue legs 12ish snails bi-colour blenny 2 percs 4 Chromis 2 serpent stars 2 cleaner shrimps Water parameters as follows: Ammonia - 0 Nitrate < 10ppm Nitrite ~ 0.3ppm <Should be zip, zero, nada> CA - 300ppm (low - working on it) PH - 8.6 (high, I know - working on it) KH 160 mg/L (high - ditto) The tank is 70 gallons and I have a 20 gallon segmented sump with 1/3 of it as a DSB with some Caulerpa growing in it. My salinity is 1.021 and I keep the tank temperature at 78. <I would raise, keep the spg near 1.025> I guess another question is this: I'm trying to fix the water parameters by doing 10% water changes ever week. I'm using RO water to make salt water. The RO water is sitting in a Rubbermaid garbage can with an airstone in it before being mixed in 8 gallon batches. The water sits for 2-3 days before I do a water change. Is this the right approach to fixing the chemistry? <One of the best> Did all my water changes stress my yellow and made him susceptible to Ich? Will I ever stop asking questions? <Not likely Ich/crypt at all... just stress, and no, don't ever stop asking questions. Bob Fenner> Sorry for the long letter it's been a sad night and I wanted to get some perspective on it. Thanks for any help! Jeff 

Sick (?) Yellow Tang  9/21/05 Hello guys (and gals maybe, I don't know), first off I want to commend everyone for offering such good advice. I have just started out with the marine aquarium hobby, and I got a yellow tang for my tank. <Not a good fish to start with> The tank is a 65 gallon w/ about 80 lbs of live rock, but that's beside the point. The tang is in a 10 gal Quarantine tank because he developed a few white spots when I got him home from the LFS. After a few minutes the white spots were all gone,<because the cysts had developed and fell off, will soon develop and seek a host> and after 3 days they have yet to return. The tang never displayed any erratic behavior either. I had freshwater fish before this, and lost two Oscars to Ich, so when I saw white spots I immediately freaked out. I read about the crypt parasite in CMA (great book btw) and on WWM and this seems like the closest match for the white spots on my tang.<Yes> I know that the parasite has a 3 stage life cycle, only being vulnerable in the free swimming stage.<Yes> The QT is at 82 degrees, and about 1.023 SG. If the white spots were indeed crypt parasites, and they fell off right as I got him into the tank, how long would it take them to hatch, and show up again on the tang? <About three to four days at your temp.>I ask only so that I know when I can feel some relief that my tang might just live. Also, I am treating the QT with chelated copper sulfate. I understand that this can cause problems with tangs' internal digestive infauna if used over too long of a period. How long is too long? Is there any other treatment that will kill the parasite in its free swimming stage (if indeed a parasite exists in the tank)? <Copper is the recommended treatment for curing Ich.  It can only be effective with the use of a copper test kit as the copper quickly precipitates into copper carbonate.  A effective does level of 0.15 to 0.20 should be maintained for a minimum of 21 days to ensure an effective kill.> One last question: my ammonia tests seem to be messed up when testing copper treated water. I use Hagen tests, and I tested untreated and then treated water from the same batch and the treated showed high signs of ammonia even though it was freshly mixed saltwater, never in a tank. Can you recommend another brand that would perhaps be more accurate? <Fast Test (Aquarium Systems), Salifert are reliable.> Thanks to whomever helps, keep up the great work. Oh, and Bob and Anthony...pleeeeease publish another volume in the natural marine aquarium series. I'm waiting for the coral/anemone book and I know it's on down the line but the first book is so good I want more! :) <Thank you.  James (Salty Dog)>

Yellow Tang Problem  9/19.5/05 I have 2 yellow tail, 2 convict and 1 blue damsel fish, 2 monos, 2 clown, a spotted hawk fish and a yellow tang. All are doing well with the exception of the Yellow Tang.  He is eating well and has a varied diet of Seaweed Salad, Flakes, pellets and brine shrimp.  The problem is that along his lateral line, around his mouth and eyes it is no longer yellow.  What do i do to fix this? >>>Greetings, Sounds to me like it could be the beginning of lateral line erosion, or "hole in the head" as it is sometimes called. Dietary deficiencies are normally to blame, so I would boost his diet with a vitamin supplement such as Selcon or similar product. Also, macro algae, and algae derived foods should be his PRIMARY diet, forget the brine shrimp. This fish eats algae exclusively in the wild. Good luck Jim<<<

Yellow Tang  9/19/05 Hi, <Hi!  Michael here today> I have had a yellow tang for about a month and a half which up until now I have had no real problems.  When I bought the fish there was a small red streak about 1 cm between the top fin and the body.  I assumed this was from mishandling and trauma from the trip from the ocean to the pet store.  The red streak did fade but is still visible.  Today I noticed another small red streak (possibly two I'm not sure) about the same size about 1 cm below the first one so now there is a red streak directly on the body.  Taking a picture would be useless because I really don't think it would end up being all that visible so I will do my best to describe it.  The red streak looks as if it was cut with a knife except without the blood because it appears to be beneath the skin.  To me it does not appear to look like Vibriosis from the pictures I have seen on the net but that is the closest possibility that I have came up with.  The only thing that I have changed in the tank lately is that I added about 50 snails and crabs last week.  The tang also appeared to have very slight sings of HLLE a while back but I think I have that taken care of.  She has great color, eats like a horse, and overall appears to be a healthy fish.  So far my only plan of action is to perform a 25% water change.  Please tell me if I'm missing something I would hate to lose this fish. <Keep feeding the tang a varied diet, check your water quality, keep performing frequent partial water changes, and see if it gets worse or better.  If the fish seems to be getting worse, it could be bacterial.  Confine to a quarantine tank and treat with a broad spectrum antibiotic for the full duration per the manufacturer's instructions> Thanks for your dedication, <You're welcome :)> Aron <M. Maddox>   

Yellow tang with red streaks 8/24/05 Hi, <Hello> About one week ago I purchased a yellow tang which appeared healthy despite three black dots which I took care of with a freshwater dip (by the way there is a 1/4 dose of Seachem Cupramine in the tank to prevent future outbreaks). The fish has been in quarantine since then. Now the fish is developing red streaks which appear to be beneath the skin next to the base of the tail. There is also a red area next to the top fin and the body of the fish when I bought it just assuming it was from mishandling. <Possibly> The red streaks got worse over night (with the exception of the red area between the fin and body), but it is still not all that noticeable except upon close inspection. By the way her breathing seems to be a little fast. I'm doing daily 10% water changes, but maintaining good water quality is difficult because this is a 4 ½ inch tang in a 10 gallon tank (in other words the protein skimmer is very busy). <Mmm, I would "take the risk" and place this fish in its permanent setting... very likely it has nothing wrong with it biologically, but will perish if not put in better surroundings> Ammonia is 0 along with nitrite and nitrate, but the temp is high up to as much as 82 degrees during the day. Also the fish seems somewhat scared of me, hiding when I come into the room or get close to the tank. <... natural... think about this> She is eating well with Nori and other sheets of vegetable matter I got from the LFS along with Mysis, plankton, and krill. Her coloration with the exception of the red streaks is great and there don't appear to be any signs of HLLE or parasites. I am hoping this is just stress related but I am not sure whether a bacteria may be the cause of my troubles or not. Please help and thanks, Jed <Please read on WWM re this species, habitat, disease... the red streaking is by and large indicative of general/overall stress... from all sorts of inputs you list... I would move the fish, now. Bob Fenner>

Sick Yellow Tang... actually improper environment, bunk foods 8/18/05 Hey Crew I must say that I find your site very helpful. <By design... do you have suggestions for its improvement?> Sometimes when I have a problem with my tank i stop by any fish store to ask them some questions but it turns out, I know more then they do, just from reading your site. <Ooh, how I'd like to see computer access in fish stores...> Let me describe to you in few words what kind of problem i have with my Tang. I'm pretty new in marine tanks; I've had my tank for about 6 months now. It's a 30 gal tank <... this is too small a volume for a tang...> with about 12lb of LR and 1-2 in of Biosand bed. I have a total of 4 fish ( 1 yellow tang for about 2 months, 3 Chromis- 4 months, 1 cleaner shrimp- 1.5 months and 3 marinara snails). My water parameters are stable; i keep water temp @ 80F, specific gravity @ 1.023-1.024, PH 8.1-8.2, nitrate @ ~40-50 ( can't get it any lower even with routine water changes ?!), <Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/nitratesmar.htm and the linked files above... You need to reduce this...> nitrite @ 0. Every time when i change water, i add cycle bacteria to my tank and Bioguard. <Not necessary> I feed my fish with two kinds of food: morsels and marine flakes ( should i use more diverse food for my fish such as frozen shrimp or more nutrients? <Ah, yes...> if yes can you give me a hint ?). <Yes, read on WWM re> Now, lets get to business. For past few days i noticed that my tang was eating less and less but i didn't noticed anything on the body. I think my shrimp did because he was all over him. Yesterday, i noticed that tang did not eat anything. Maybe i should mention that i used to feed them twice a day and now for about 3 weeks I'm feeding them once a day. Also, it's got red spot at the end of his "mouth/nose" that looks like a blood; it's not that small because it looks like the whole upper "lip" is red. Do know what might have caused it and how to cure it? I really want to save it and i need your help once again.   Site fan, <Then read, use it!>> Marcin <Your trouble's roots are obvious... this system is too small, the water quality unsuitable, and the food unpalatable... Please read on WWM re the species, its care... starting here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/YellowTang.htm and the linked files  

Yellow Tang with Brownish, Streaky Discolorations... iatrogenic disease 7/7/05 Hi Everyone, and thanks for such a great resource. <Welcome> My Yellow Tang (see attached photo) has developed brownish streaks on his skin and fins.  His behavior is more aggressive than usual, but he is eating well. SETUP 35 g. glass 30in 1x65 Watt Current USA PowerCompact Single Satellite CPR BakPak 2 Protein Skimmer with bio bale intact Emperor filter (BioWheel removed to keep nitrates lower) one heater LIVESTOCK True Percula clown Frogspawn coral Green colony polyps (Zoanthids) Scarlet Skunk Cleaner Shrimp Hermit Crabs (2) Diamond Goby Convict Fish Yellow Tang 4-Stripe B&W Damsel Orange Linckia Star Turbo Snails (2) Nassarius Snails (4) 35 lbs. Live rock Fiji Pink live sand (2-3 inches) Water = 78-81 degrees (I have a cooling fan set up but it's been very hard to stabilize the temp for about 3 weeks, which is about as long as the Tang has looked poorly).  No ammonia, no nitrite, pH 8.2, Salinity 1.024. Nitrates are high, over 80ppm, and I am using a product called AZ-NO3 to lower them.  It is working very slowly (9 days of use, per instructions on bottle, an about a 50% reduction from ~120ppm (eek!). <... a good product, but...> Other issues in tank include Zoanthids suffering a little bit of die-off (see attached photo), and a seeming fungal infection on the 4-stripe (red-pink-whitish "wound-looking" sore where dorsal fin once was). <... all related> Yeah. It's a tuff time in the tank. Any advice, especially on the tang and polyps, would be very greatly appreciated. Best, DS <You have a "classical" situation of environmental disease creating biological disease creating environmental... your tank is too small for the life you list... its degraded condition, particularly the Zo's, are poisoning the livestock further... You could do a few things to ameliorate the induced dangerous water quality... more water changes, more filtration, activated carbon use... But really need a larger system period. If you want to save the fishes, you should remove the Zoanthids pronto... I wish you well. Bob Fenner>

Tang problem  07/02/05 Hi I have recently set up a 210 gallon aquarium. I had it filled by a local   fish store who does maintenance on tanks... well, after everything was up and   running I released three yellow tangs in it along with some other fish two days after. The day after I added some more rock to it...its been approx. four days  since the fish have been in there and now I'm noticing brownish blotches on their  sides....above their eyes and close to their back fin....but I haven't noticed  anything on the other fish but all are dark in color also (domino damselfish,  black clown). from what I've read so far I believe it to be bacteria from the  environment....so how do I go about getting rid of the bacteria? I have no  corals...a couple of Featherdusters and crabs ..... so I do have a feeling that  I should treat the whole tank considering that the others may be   infected......but what should I use? <The tank was only up and running two days, no wonder you are having problems.  How was the tank cycled?  To start with, the tank is too new to add tangs in it.  I suggest checking the  ammonia level in the system and this should have been done before adding any fish.  James (Salty Dog)> Thanks

Surgeonfishes: Tangs for  Marine Aquariums
Diversity, Selection & Care

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