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Acanthurus coeruleus - Blue tang surgeonfish

Acanthurus coeruleus - Blue tang surgeonfish  Photo courtesy: Geoff Schultz

Blue tangs have a deep blue body with a white or yellow spine at the base of their tail fin. They usually grow between 5-10 inches in length and live between 10-60 feet in depth. They often swim in large schools, but also can be found swimming alone. Blue tangs are capable of changing their body color from light blue to deep purple.

Distribution, Stock Structure and Migration
Western Atlantic: New York, USA and Bermuda to the Gulf of Mexico and Brazil. Eastern Atlantic: Ascension Island.

Inhabits coral reefs, inshore grassy or rocky areas.

Feeds entirely on algae.

Quick Fact
The spine on both sides of the caudal peduncle may inflict painful wounds.

Learn More
- FishBase

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