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Finding Dory – the Facts of the Royal Blue Tang Fish

Marine Life medium21st edition of Marine Life monthly post. Marine Life post published every 19th of the month. It aims to share information about the marine life species and to promote their conservation. All images in this post are taken by Indah Susanti unless stated otherwise.


Finding Dory movie is breaking the animated movie record with $136.2M opening weekend (June 17-19, 2016) in the US and Canada. Dory, the forgetful fish, is categorized as Regal Tang fish or Royal Blue Tang, a family member of surgeonfish. Regal Tang fish origins from the Indo-Pacific area, where common to see in waters of the Philippines, Indonesia, and Australia.  Some people are often referring Dory as Blue Tang fish, while the Blue Tang fish name is commonly used to refer another species of the fish in the Atlantic and the Caribbean that does not look like Dory.

I have seen both species as wildlife during scuba diving; the Regal/ Royal Blue Tang fish and the (Atlantic/Caribbean) Blue Tang fish. Both species were shy from humans. Sometimes the fish swim together as a group, but I have seen them swimming alone. Maybe looking for Nemo.


Following is the picture of Regal/Royal Blue Tang fish, the photo was taken in Indonesia (first picture). The second picture on the right is (Atlantic/Caribbean) Blue Tang fish; the picture was taken in Cuba.


The Tang fish is omnivorous. Dory in her real life eats plants and meat – fish meat included! The eating habit continued on its captivity in an aquarium that the fish is capable of attacking smaller fish. Think twice before having the Tang fish in your aquarium, this fish is not easy to handle. Additionally, the fish has numerous venomous spines that cover the back and the tail to protect herself from being eaten by her predator. Perhaps because of its venomous spines, the Tang fish meat is not popular in human’s seafood cuisine.

After all, it is more beautiful to see the colorful fish alive in the ocean than on our plates.

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