Widespread in coastal waters of the Indo-Pacific Region (Ref. 9137). Present in seagrass beds at juvenile stage (Ref. 41878). The only catfish found in coral reefs (Ref. 58534). Also found in estuaries, tide pools and open coasts. The aggregation takes on the appearance of a much larger creature or even inanimate objects, reducing the chances of predation (Ref. 54301). An omnivore that eats benthic animals, algae, and detritus (Ref. 9137). Adults search and stir the sand incessantly for crustaceans, mollusks, worms, and sometimes fish (Ref. 5213). The highly venomous serrate spine of the first dorsal and each of the pectoral fins are dangerous, and even fatal in rare cases (Ref. 1602).