Body elongate, oval; snout short, almost vertical; adult with long, broad-based tapering horn before eye, (a bump on forehead of juveniles); mouth small, protrusible, low on head; teeth small, conical, tips slightly depressed & either smooth or with multiple small points; dorsal fin VI, 27-29; anal II, 27-29; pectoral 16-17 rays; pelvics I, 3; 2 pairs of cutting keels on plates on narrow tail base; tail fin edge straight to slightly rounded, without filaments; scales very small, rough; lateral line complete.
Olive-brown to grey; many small dark spots on head and lower body, many thin dark bars on upper body; tail whitish with dark blotch at base.
Size: 60 cm.
Habitat: reefs and rocky shores; juveniles in sheltered habitats; adults in mid-water around exposed reef fronts.
Depth: 0-45 m; juveniles usually 2-20 m; adults usually 5-30 m.
An Indo-Pacific species; recorded as a vagrant in the Galapagos Islands.