Review and images by JimoAi; edited by bmathison1972
The Zebrasoma tangs are a genus of surgeonfish known for their fins that erect like a sail, a spine at the end of the tail for defense like all other surgeonfishes, and features that make them similar to some butterflyfish species such as a disk shaped body and their long snout. There are 7 known species within the genus, all are found in warm waters in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. The most famous is the yellow tang (Zebrasoma flavescens). They are found in the Pacific Ocean, west of Hawaii and east of Japan. They are the second most popular species of surgeonfish and adapt readily to the home aquarium, which makes it a popular addition to those who have a large enough tank. The ones collected for the aquarium trade mostly come from Hawaii. Like the rest of the species in its genus, they are mainly a herbivorous species and some provide ‘cleaning services’ for larger animals like green sea turtles.
About the figure: the fish measures 4 cm along the curves. The largest yellow tangs attain a length of 20 cm from snout to tailfin, which puts this figure at the 1:5 scale. It has a green staghorn coral base, which the fish is attached to by a thin acrylic rod.
The figure is coloured in a lemon yellow colour, hence the name ‘yellow tang’. They eye is a much darker yellow than the body and that base colour is a translucent yellow, as some bony fish figures from Japanese companies are sculpted with translucent/transparent plastics to give their fins a translucent look.
There is a lateral line sculpted and a streak of white below it. There is a spine on the either side of the base of the tail, which is used to defend against any would-be predators. One of the pectoral fins are the same sculpt as the fish while the other is a separate inserted piece. The dorsal fin is erected, suggesting that this individual is surprised by something, compared to the Yujin yellow tang, which has its fins more relaxed.
Like any of the Kaiyodo bottlecap figures, this figure has been long discontinued and your best bet is second hand stores like eBay or Yahoo Auctions. There are 2 other yellow tang figures: the Yujin yellow tang (see below) and the recent Yowies USA yellow tang. This makes it the 2nd most represented surgeonfish after the blue hippo tang. It is to be hoped that more surgeonfish, like the unicorn tang and the clown tang can get a proper figure in the future!