Zebrasoma scopas is a widespread but highly variable surgeonfish species, with unusual color aberrations that are prized by the reefkeeping world. The Indian and Pacific Oceans have produced many freaks over the years from as far apart as Kenya to Thailand, Indonesia to the Philippines and this specimen, named a Banana Koi Tang by its exporter, came all the way from the Philippines to the Abyss Aquatic Warehouse, in Manchester, UK.
The 5” fish was quarantined in late 2020 and fed a varied diet before being offered for sale. Blue Face Koi tangs usually come from the Indian Ocean but the Philippines is the place to get solid yellow fish that look like Yellow tangs, and Blue Face Koi tangs like this one with a really yellow body. Like all aberrant Scopas, this fish’s color and pattern is fluid, and it’s already ranged from a custard yellow with dark smudges on the flanks in the video, to solid, taxi yellow with a bronze mask in the still photo.
The Abyss is well known in Europe for procuring rare and ultra-high-end marine fish and previous piscine guests have included an aberrant Lemonpeel angel, a fully white Scopas tang, a deep water Popeye Catalufa and a white, Longnose Butterflyfish. They even employ staff solely as full-time fish feeders for their precious collection!
Reefbuilders understands that the fish is already sold, but the video shows the Banana Split in a sales tank, dining on flake food with some Wreckfish. Staff describe “him” as a super gentle zoomer who likes to have a mad half-hour every day. Further pictures and video documenting his colour change and progress have been promised once he reaches his forever home.