Newly Arrived Aberrant Scopas Tangs


Scopas Tangs, also known as the Brown Scopas Tangs are typically yellowish in the dorsal area while more brown ventrally as the colors gradually get darker towards the tail.


The body is covered with fine, intricate, light blue markings and the tail is a solid brown color with a highlighted blue edge as seen above courtesy of Live Aquaria.  Scopas Tangs are typically collected in size from 1 1/2″ – 3 1/4″ to as large 5 1/4″ to 6 1/4″.  Juveniles are a little more attractive than adult specimens as they display larger dorsal and posterior fins and a slightly purplish body color.

Scopas tangs prefer larger aquariums and it is recommended that they be kept in 110 gallon aquariums or larger.  Like many tangs, they are aggressive towards their own species and are best kept as just one per tank unless the aquarium is in excess of 300 gallons.


Most Tangs are grazers and Scopas are no exception.  In the wild they graze on algae throughout the day but will also eat meaty foods in the aquarium.  A mixed diet of algae based flakes, pellets and Sea Veggies (nori) is recommended along with some meaty foods such as you would typically feed to carnivorous fish.  A strong algae based diet contributes to the overall health of these fish and helps to strengthen their immune system while reducing aggression towards other aquarium inhabitants.

Aberrant Scopas have varying degrees of color patterns and intensity.  It has been observed that they can change their colors and patters in as short as a weeks time.  The reason for this behavior is not clear but it is thought to be an adaptive form of camouflage.


Collectors of Aberrant Scopas tangs guard information about precise locations from where they are collected. Most are believe to com from Java and the Christmas Islands.  Ou research has also located a supplier in Vanuatu who has the yellow and blackish type listed on it’s website.Aberrant-Tang-2

Recently, our friend Ralphie Davila from Aquatic X-cellence in New York imported a batch of Aberrant Scopas. Below are some of the photos from specimens which Ralphie recently sold.  We happened to pick up two of the nicest ones.  Prices on Koi Tangs typically range from $200.00 to as high as $2000.00, depending on the coloration and beauty and what a collector is willing to pay for such a rare fish.  Can you guess which ones we selected?




About Author

Scott Groseclose is the owner of AquaNerd, Aquarium Specialty, Aqua Specialty Wholesale, BioTek Marine, & The Carolina Reef Experience. He has a degree in Biology from St. Andrews University and he has been a passionate reef keeper since 1988.