Found in coastal reefs (Ref. 9710); silty reefs or wrecks in lagoons, bays, or harbors (Ref. 27370), may occur in aggregations; also found hidden in caves and cracks of rocks during the day (Ref. 12382, 48635), usually in areas subject to strong currents (Ref. 48635). Feed mainly on benthic crabs and shrimps (Ref. 2334), also preys on small fishes (Ref. 12382). Eggs and larvae are pelagic (Ref. 6746). Spine of preopercle venomous (Ref. 2334).