Care Level: Moderate
Reef Compatible: Yes
General Description: The Desjardinii Sailfin Tang, also known as the Indian Ocean Sailfin Tang or Red Sea Sailfin Tang, are native to waters around Africa, the Maldives, and Sri Lanka. Most similar to the Sailfin Tang (Zebrasoma veliferum), but differs greatly in the adundance of freckles on its face and abdomen, and the maze of yellow stripes along its body, anal and dorsal fins that become more defined with age. The tail of the Desjardinii sailfin tang is typically blue-grey in color with white freckles, a characteristic that also separates it from the Sailfin tang. Markings and spots in juvenile Desjardinii sailfin tangs will not be nearly as abundant or defined. This tang is very active and relatively hardy once acclimated, making it suitable for large fish-only and reef aquariums. An adult Desjardinii sailfin tang can reach a size of approximately 15″, and can appear to double in size when their dorsal and anal fins are completely extended open.
Diet Requirements: In the wild tangs are primarily herbivorous. A diet largely consisting of algae-based foods is absolutely necessary to maintain optimal health, coloration, immune function, and reduce aggression. If not, tangs often develop head and lateral line erosion from such deficiencies. Vegetable based flake foods or frozen foods, that may also include spirulina algae, are excellent options. We also recommend offering dried seaweed on a rock or clip three times a week minimum. Desjardinii sailfin tangs will consume various other protein-based frozen foods.
Care Requirements: An established minimum 125 gallon aquarium with 18+ inch width is required for turning around. Smaller specimens can be temporarily raised in smaller quarters (no less than 75 gallons) as long as it is upgraded accordingly. This tang enjoys a variety of rock work and crevices to take refuge, but also should be provided with open swimming space. Desjardinii sailfin tangs are often sought after to add to a reef aquarium for not only their beautiful appearance, but their natural tendency to graze upon algae build up. Typically, Zebrasoma species are semi-aggressive and territorial in nature. If you are looking to avoid potential rough-housing with other tank-mates, it can help to introduce this fish near last or last. Additionally, Zebrasoma often conflict with conspecifics (including other species within the genus). If you want to house various types of tangs together, it is best to add them all at once, or closely together at the very least, for the best success. Recommended water conditions, 72-78° F, KH 8-12, pH 8.1-8.4, salinity 1.020-1.025.
Purchase Size: Small: 1-1/4″ to 2-1/4″; Medium: 2-1/2″ to 3-1/2″; Large: 3-3/4″ to 5-1/2″
Note: Your item may not look identical to the image provided due to variation within species. Purchase sizes are approximate.