The Orange Shoulder Tang (Acanthurus olivaceus)

Orange Shoulder Tang

The Orange Shoulder Tang (Acanthurus olivaceus), is also known as the Orange Spot Tang, Orangeband Surgeonfish, and Orange-epaulette Surgeonfish. Acanthurus olivaceus is a marine tropical fish in the family Acanthuridae, which includes the Tangs, Surgeonfish, and the Unicornfish. Each of these names indicates the distinct and interesting feature that makes this species be conspicuous, the vibrant orange horizontal band with a broad blue edge on its side.

The Orange Shoulder Tang will have a various appearance as a juvenile. As a juvenile is a solid yellow with just the least hint of blue fringing on the dorsal fin and anal fin. The bar-shaped marking on the side of their body will be a shade of orange to brownish. As an adult, the front half of the body turns light grey and the back half takes on a dark gray-blue color. The bar marking on the side will turn to a bright orange color and develop a blue edge around it. The tail takes on a lyre shape. They will also develop orange and blue highlights around the border of their body and fins.

The Orange Shoulder Tang is found in the Indo-Pacific from the eastern Indian Ocean to Hawaii, southern Japan, as well as the Marquesas Islands at depths of 4 to 45 meters. As adults are found in rock rubble or bare rock and sandy reef areas while juveniles inhabit the safer waters of protected areas such as bays and lagoons. The adults Orange Shoulder Tang can grow up to 36 cm (14 inches). This fish generally comes in size of 7.6 to 15 cm (3 – 6 inches).

The Orange Shoulder Tang is the least likely to become semi-aggressive with other tangs of a similar shape, color, and size to them. It is one of the most friendly tang species that generally shows less aggression towards other fish. However, there still is a small risk they can become aggressive with other same species in the same aquarium. If you wish to keep more than one in the same aquarium, you should preferably get juvenile specimens and introduce every one of them to the aquarium at the same time. They are typically reef safe when they are maintained well fed with the algae and other foods.

 

How To Take Care Of Orange Shoulder Tang?

How To Take Care Of Orange Shoulder Tang

Do you know how to take care of Orange Shoulder Tang? Marine tropical fish are very sensitive fish with very specific care needs. It is not very difficult to care the Orange Shoulder Tang. Most all saltwater fish will require similar water conditions, created to replicate that of natural seawater. They are really sensitive to the disease before it has established itself in the aquarium. It is usually necessary to quarantine the fish using formalin or copper sulfate for a period of around 2 weeks.

The Orange Shoulder Tang is a very fast growing species. The adult size of 14 inches will require a minimum 125 gallon (473 liters) or larger tank is necessary to provide plenty of swimming room, hiding spot, and a tight-fitting cover to avoid that fish will jump out and perish.

The Orange Shoulder Tang is a very active swimmer and good community fish, requiring a larger fish tank with plenty of space for swimming and not kept with other tank mates of the same species. It is usually best to keep only one Orange Shoulder Tang each tank unless the system is vast as well as there is an abundance of visual barriers.

The Orange Shoulder Tang will usually mix with other tangs of a similar species, such as the commonly seen Yellow Tang and Sailfin Tang. When keeping more than one Acanthurus species of Surgeonfish, it is best to add them at the same time to a much larger tank. It is aggressive towards other tangs but peaceful with other fish in the aquarium.

Use rocks or/and corals to create crevices. Consist of live rocks in the set up as well as encourage natural algae growth. Especially for adult specimens, along with a lot of corals or/and rocks to give some cover and for sleeping. This decoration will give itself to algae growth which these fish will enjoy grazing on. This makes the Orange Shoulder Tang a very entertaining fish to have in a correctly sized set-up.

Water quality should be kept to consistently high standards, as like some other members of this family, will make sure these fish stay healthy and disease-free. The water must be warm, keep the water temperature at 75°F – 82°F (24°C – 28°C), the pH-value at 8.1 – 8.4, and the specific gravity at 1.021 to 1.025 should be maintained.

Saltwater Fish Disease – Diagnose, Symptoms and Treatment. Ich (white spot – cryptocaryon) and marine velvet are very common with this Orange Shoulder Tang. Quarantine is highly recommended for this Tang! Use cleaner shrimps as well. Keep the water highly oxygenated.

 

The Diet Of Orange Shoulder Tang

The Diet Of Orange Shoulder Tang

The Orange Shoulder Tang is mainly an herbivore that feeds on algae in the wild and should be fed a diet containing veggies and some meaty foods. Feed a varied diet for omnivores, with a large veggie part, in small amounts 3 times daily for its ongoing healthiness.

Use a veggie clip or provide dried seaweed tied to a rock and feed a minimum of 3 times weekly. It is peaceful, active, and will eat both algae-based and meaty foods. Sea Veggies, Seaweed Salad, and Ocean Nutrition are all ideal products and are very easy to use.

Maintain your Orange Shoulder Tang on the different diet. Even though this species of tang will browse on algae within the fish tank, the green part its diet should be supplemented with frozen herbivore rations, Spirulina-enriched brine shrimp, Spirulina (blue-green algae), green marine flake, broccoli, lettuce, cucumber, Nori (dried seaweed) and so on. This will strengthen their immune system, decrease aggression and improve their overall health.

The Orange Shoulder Tang quite easily adjust to captive diets as well as will eventually eat pellet and flake foods too. It is suggested to soak flake food in some types of vitamin supplements like Selcon or a garlic supplement so as to help the fish fight off any possible parasite infestation and provide balanced nutrition.

The Orange Shoulder Tang will also take meaty frozen foods, however, make sure that it is receiving enough green food to help prevent HLLE. Adding a specially formulated vitamin supplement to any frozen foods will be advantageous. You should also provide your Tang irregular servings of meaty foods, e.g. mysid shrimp and brine shrimp in the aquarium for its continuous growth and health. Meaty foods should be offered a few times per week to help provide extra protein.

 

The Breeding Of Orange Shoulder Tang

The Breeding Of Orange Shoulder Tang

The Orange Shoulder Tang has not been successfully bred in captivity. They are very difficult in the home aquarium since they are pelagic spawners. Unlike a lot of saltwater fish species that are pelagic spawners, damselfish equally as the clownfish (Amphiprioninae), are substrate spawners which means they lay their adhesive eggs on the substrate.

In the wild, this Orange Shoulder Tang, as with other Surgeonfish, is a free spawner, with the male fertilizing the eggs as they drift to the surface area and the female ejecting her eggs near the surface water. When the fertilized eggs reach the surface they drift with the ocean current in the plankton layer of the ocean. The mature eggs, and the fry hatch out, still drifting in the current.

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