Scientific Name: Paracanthurus hepatus
Ease of Care: Moderate
Approximate Arrival Size: Tiny: .5 to 1.0 inches; Small: 1 to 2 inches; Medium: 2 to 3 inches; Large: 4 to 5 inches; X-Large: 5+ inches
Approximate Full Size: 12 inches
Native Region: Indo-Pacific
Reef Safe: Yes
Blue Hippo Tangs, Paracanthurus hepatus, are found dispersed throughout the waters of the Indo Pacific region. Its common name "Hippo" is a reference to the similarity in sound between the scientific name Hepatus and the animal "Hippopatamus." This fish has a number of alternate common names including: Regal, Royal, Pacific Blue, Painter's Palette, and Hepatus Tang. These Tangs are agile swimmers and entertain the aquarium viewers with their amusing antics. Tangs are herbivores and their diets should therefore contain a variety of marine vegetable matter, such as seaweed (spirulina). Because most Tang can be susceptible to parasite infestations when stressed during shipment, it is best to quarantine them or be prepared with a parasitie antibiotic treatment before placement in a display aquarium.
Please note, this tang like many others will stress out during shipping. This stress will often lead to the fish laying on its side in the bag, breathing heavily and losing much of its color. Once the fish is acclimated properly to the new aquarium and is released, it will regain its color and settle in. This can take anywhere from a couple of hours to several days.