A territorial species (Ref. 167) which is common in surge zones of exposed seaward reefs. The large male controls well-defined feeding territories and harems of females (Ref. 1602, 48637). Benthopelagic (Ref. 58302). Adult usually forms schools and commonly found in shallow gutters. Juvenile solitary and secretive on shallow rubble habitats (Ref. 48637). The species is almost continually in motion. Herbivorous but also feeds on crustaceans (Ref. 5503). The venomous caudal spine can cause painful wounds. Forms spawning aggregations (Ref. 27825).
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