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Sea Life, Animals
& Exhibits

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Sailfin Tang

(Zebrasoma veliferum)

Sailfin tang are members of the surgeonfish family.


They are indigenous to the Pacific Ocean and Western Indian Ocean. The Sailfin Tang fish are mainly found in lagoons and seaward reefs.


Primarily an herbivore and feeds on marine algae.


Both paired and group spawning have been documented among this species. Color changes can be seen during this time. Just prior to spawning, individuals of this species form large groups. This usually occurs in winter or early spring, but it can occur throughout the year.


This species is prey for anything near the reef that is large enough to consume it. An example of such a predator is the white tip reef shark. To avoid predation, they typically feed during the day and hide among the reef at night. This species also has a sharp caudal spine that may act to deter predators. To advertise this protection, the tail fin is a bright yellow coloration most likely serves as warning to predators.