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Old 11-11-2015, 08:36 PM   #1
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Tang & Clown

In my 85 salt water tank, about two weeks ago, I added a clownfish and a salifin tang to my tank where it already had a salifin tang, foxface, and a clownfish. The first salifin tang and foxface get along great, and they never bother the clownfish.

With the new fish though, the old clownfish typically stays away from the new one, but when they get close together, the old one gets a bit aggressive.

Initially, the new salifin tang liked to hang out in the back corner, and whenever a fish came near by, it would chase the other fish away, only allowing the new clownfish nearby. However, lately he started to venture out of his corner, and now is bothering the other tang.

Is the tank too small for two tangs? I had saw that some people manage to keep tangs happily in about 95 gallons, while others are saying they need at least a 100 gallons. There is plenty of swimming space, and I regularly add seaweed (saw somewhere it helped limit aggressive behavior, not sure how true that is). With the clownfish, should I add another one or let them establish dominance? Or should I get rid of some fish?

note: the aggressive clown has had another clownfish with it before, it was added at the same time. Unfortunately, the clownfish had gotten stuck in a place and died (I quickly fixed the problem now, won't be able to happen again). Those two had gotten along really well, so I am surprised at this clownfish being aggressive.
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Old 11-11-2015, 08:51 PM   #2
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it is recommended if adding more than 1 tang do it at the same time
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Old 11-11-2015, 08:53 PM   #3
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Dang. Do you think that changing the layout of the tank will work, so they can reestablish their boundaries?
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Old 11-11-2015, 09:04 PM   #4
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Tangs of the same kind are going to fight. Same body shape/color are much more likely to fight. That tank is to small for 2 sailfin tangs let alone 1. Sailfins get huge. You may get lucky but one is gonna eventually be the loser most likely.


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Old 11-11-2015, 09:07 PM   #5
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it's possible but not a guaranteed fix , now if they were both removed for say a week or so and you rearranged the rock work and you had a place to keep them apart than introduced them together chances would be better as the dominance issue will be equal , another thing with tangs is if they look a like they usually will fight it's in there nature
but in time they would need to be re-homed as bribo said as they do get big
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Old 11-11-2015, 09:08 PM   #6
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With the exception of large tanks(200+)IMO most successful multiple tang stockings use tangs of different shape.
2 sailfins in a 85 is bold to be polite IMO(and risky for whole tank ).
I infected my 120 with marine ich by adding a tang that just wasn't going to be appreciated by the other tang.
Lost almost every single fish!
The two tangs were worth $300 alone...
It was from the stress and aggression not bad /unhealthy fish.
I also just recently lost an 8 year old clown and have another single in a different tank.
I am hesitant to add the two together?
I have seen mindless clown stocking go down with out issue and had clowns that killed any other that entered no matter how well planned and executed.
Are the clowns the same species?
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Old 11-11-2015, 10:56 PM   #7
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I agree with CB above.
Adding 2 of the same Tang in such a small tank is going to cause issues. I'd not do it myself, and I have a 240g tank.
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Old 11-11-2015, 11:48 PM   #8
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There isn't much one can do for this situation. All the points above have already gone over the why and what not, but we have also forgot how large of a tank a sailfin needs. They get huge. They need a huge tank. A 85 isn't going to cut it for large tangs.


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Old 12-01-2015, 01:29 PM   #9
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I notice one thing not often considered when talking tangs and that is the actual dimensions of the tank.
If you have a 85 gallon cube that will not be the same as having an 85 gallon tank that is 5'-6' long.


IMO if you want to house tangs, especially large ones or multiples, you need a tank at least 6' long regardless of the total capacity.


CoralBandit spelled it out though,
two sailfins = stress = compromised immune system = ich and other parasites outbreaks = potential loss of all livestock.
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