Regal Tang (Paracanthurus hepatus)

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Regal Tang

Regal Tang

Paracanthurus hepatus

681 Litres (180 US G.)

27.9-30.5cm (11-12 ")


8.1 - 8.5

22.2-25.6°C (72 -78 °F)

8-10 °d

1:1 M:F

Live Foods
Other (See article)

8-12 years



Additional names

Blue Tang, Pacific Blue Tang, Regal Tang, Hippo Tang, Palette Surgeonfish, Yellowtail Tang, Dory

Additional scientific names

Teuthis hepatus, Acanthurus hepatus, Acanthurus theuthis, Paracanthurus theuthis


Indo-Pacific: East Africa, including the Mascarene Islands to Kiribati, north to southern Japan, south to the southern Great Barrier Reef, New Caledonia, and Samoa. As one name implies, these fish live in the Pacific Ocean, but they are also found in the Indian Ocean, from East Africa to Micronesia, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). Their homes are the coral reefs that grow along the shores.

Tank compatibility[edit]

A reasonably peaceful fish that is usually reef compatible. Compatible with dwarf and large angelfish, blennies, clownfish, eels, gobies, groupers, hawkfish, lionfish, pseudochromis, puffers and wrasse. Can be compatible with other Tang species of different shapes and sizes, or with similar Tang species in a larger aquarium.


Mostly Plankivorous in the wild, it will eat most foods, and prefers a varied diet including vegetable matter. Will take mysis shrimp, blanched vegetables and prepared foods.

Feeding regime[edit]

Feed once or twice a day.

Environment specifics[edit]

Needs a large and spacious tank with places to hide and open spaces to swim.


An active and curious fish that often has a distinct personality. This fish has often been known to "play dead" a lot when first added into the tank. Will often wedge itself into deep crevices, especially when young. Even though they may appear stuck at times, they will not wedge themselves into something they can't get out of.


Thanks to the film 'Finding Nemo', the Regal Tang is now easily identified by most people. It's base colour is a vivid blue/purple with a darker blue/black band across the top half of the body, the pattern will vary from fish to fish. The caudal fin is yellow and outlined in black and the pectoral fins are also tipped with yellow.



External links[edit]