Juveniles and females easily recognized by the generally black body with large white spots; males have large black spots on the soft parts of the dorsal and anal fins. Juveniles resemble the juveniles of B. mesothorax but have white rather than yellow spots. Undergoes a dramatic color change with growth.
Axilspot hogfish's Behavior & Ecology
Adults inhabit clear lagoon and seaward reefs, common in clear shallow waters at 1-8 m; large individuals occasionally at greater depths below 27 m. Juveniles occur solitary in caves or under ledges and act as cleaners by picking at bodies of other fishes (adults occasionally do this); occurring regularly at depths of 14-26 m.
Axilspot hogfish's Feeding
Feed mainly on benthic, hard-shelled, invertebrates such as mollusks and crustaceans.
Axilspot hogfish's Reproduction
Oviparous, distinct pairing during breeding.
Axilspot hogfish habitat
This species is moderately small, to about 143 mm SL. It inhabits clear lagoon and seaward reefs. Adults occur commonly in clear shallow waters at depths of 1-8 m. Large individuals do occasionally occur at somewhat greater depths, having been collected below 27 m at Cocos-Keeling Atoll. Juveniles are often found in caves and beneath ledges in moderately deep waters, occurring regularly at depths of 14 to 26 m. It is almost always associated with well-developed coral reefs. It feeds mainly on benthic, hard-shelled, invertebrates such as mollusks and crustaceans. Juveniles act as cleaners by picking at bodies of other fishes (adults occasionally do this).