National Aquarium - Yellow Tang

Yellow tang

Zebrasoma flavescens


This reef-dwelling fish is known for its bright yellow body.

Exhibit Name and Location:
Baltimore - Pacific Coral Reef

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National Aquarium - Yellow Tang National Aquarium - Yellow Tang National Aquarium - Yellow Tang

Yellow Tang

This reef-dwelling fish is known for its bright yellow body. It is a popular aquarium fish and is exported in great numbers from Hawaii for this purpose. It spawns primarily during the full moon. Although males can become territorial, the yellow tang is sometimes known to live in small groups.

These fish look very similar to the juvenile stage of blue tangs, but blue tangs turn blue and get quite a bit larger, where yellow tangs retain their bright yellow color and stay fairly small.

A Note From The Caretaker

"These fish are lawnmowers! Any thread of algae is quickly eaten. They spend large portions of their day picking at the rocks. "


The yellow tang primarily feeds on algae.


The yellow tang is commonly 7 inches long.


This fish is found in the Pacific Ocean around the Hawaiian Islands and in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Florida.

Population Status

This species is not threatened.


Larger fish, sharks

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Holly Bourbon
Curator of Large-Fish Exhibits/Diving Safety Officer

pressroom striped fish

As the curator of large-fish exhibits, Holly's day-to-day responsibilities include managing our staff of aquarists and making sure that all of the animals under our care are doing well! Learn More

Baltimore, MD


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