Yellow Eye Kole Tangs Ctenochaetus strigosus

Yellow Eye Kole Tangs Ctenochaetus strigosus

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Yellow eye kole tangs (Ctenochaetus strigosus), are known by many names including the Striped Bristletooth tang and Goldring Bristletooth.

The Yellow eye kole tang has a deep maroon to purple colored oval body, with faint horizontal stripes across the length of its body, and a bold yellow ring around its eye. These features delineate it from other similar species such as the Gold-ring Spotted Bristle tooth Tangs.

The Yellow Eyed Kole Tang will reach a length of eight inches, is considered to be "reef safe", and should be kept in an aquarium larger than 100 gallons to provide plenty of swimming room. It is aggressive towards other Tangs, therefore, it is best to only keep one per tank. It will not harm sessile invertebrates in the reef tank environment.

They are native to Hawaiian reefs and were once considered food for Hawaiian royalty.

Note: With a limited distribution around the Hawaiian Islands, the Yellow eye kole tang has become unavailable to order due to the suspension of collecting in Hawaiian waters that began in early 2021.

  • Name: Yellow Eyed Striped Kole Tang ( Ctenochaetus strigosus )
  • Aggressiveness: With Same Species
  • Reef Compatible: Yes
  • Max Size: 9"
  • Minimum Tank Size: 100 gallons
  • Relative Care: moderate

Members of Ctenochaetus are among some of the most efficient algae grazers and the Yellow eye kole tang is no exception. It has been commonly observed to clean algal growths from the shells of sea turtles, forming a symbiotic relationship. The fish benefit by having access to an easy meal, while the turtles get groomed of the algae growths on their shells, which can increase drag in the water when growth becomes too dense.

Diet: Yellow Eyed Kole Tangs are herbivores, grazing algae on the shallow reefs and help keep corals healthy by preventing overgrowth of algae by feeding around them. They are happy to graze along rocks and coral for algae in the ocean. But when in a tank, you will need to provide them with little more nutrients. Dried algae are available to buy and recommended for their tank.