13 Awesome Facts About Yellow Tang Fish

The Yellow Tang is one of the most popular saltwater fish and is commonly kept in home aquariums.

They are members of the Acanthuridae family and are a great choice for beginners.

If you are considering adding a Yellow Tang into your saltwater tank, check out these awesome facts that cover everything from lifespan, tankmates, behavior, and much more.


yellow tang facts

Yellow Tang facts


1. Life expectancy can be up to 30 years in the wild.  Although in captivity, they may only live for 10 years. 

2. Yellow Tangs lose their bright yellow color at night. 



3. 70% of Yellow Tangs used in the aquarium hobby are sourced in the Pacific Ocean west of Hawaii.

4. In the wild, Yellow Tangs will clean marine algae from the shell of turtles.

5. The largest Yellow Tang was measured at 7.9″ in length and 0.79″ thick.

6. They can live in a large range of water depth in the wild from 6.6 to 150.9 feet deep. 

7. Females can release up to 40,000 eggs when breeding.

8. Other than size, there are no noticeable differences between males and females. Males are generally larger. 



9. Yellow Tangs are considered semi-aggressive but will get along with most tankmates.

10. They have a white razor-like scalpel close to their tail which is mainly used for protection.

11. In the wild, Yellow Tangs can be seen swimming in either large schools or individually. 

12. The Yellow Tang’s skin contains a mucus layer that protects them from parasites and bacteria. This layer reduces drag in the water which can help them swim faster.

13. It’s common to see adult Yellow Tangs swim in shallow waters where juveniles like to be at deeper depths in the wild. 


Read more about Yellow Tangs here:

Do Yellow Tangs get along with Clownfish?

27 Yellow Tang tankmates