| Ecological Descriptors
| Ben (S, M)
||Cru, Wor, Pisc, Veg
Unicorn like horn (rostrum) between eyes. Blackish to grey-brown to pale grey, or mottled reddish-brown to tan, but can have darks spots, white lines etc or with a network pattern (of dark, pale bordered blotches) of varying extent on face, in a narrow band along shoulders and along sides of tail base. Relative length of horn diminishes with age. 2 dark bands on tail.with pale band between. Possess a small lure with 3 fleshy points between the rostrum ("horn") and upper lip. Circular gill opening with membrane in pectoral axilla. Head and body with conical tubercles. Pectoral fin black at tips, otherwise plain with no spots. Under surface of the tip of this fin's rays become a fleshy pad. Underside and mouth may be red. Can be fringed along body, especially tail.
Inhabits flat bottoms of sand, coral rubble, seagrass or mud. Occurs from water's edge to at least 275 m depth.
A sluggish species, usually moving on it's limb-like pectoral fins on the bottom. The rostrum, a unicorn-like projection between the eyes, is quite long and pronounced in younger polka-dot batfish. As the fish ages, the rostrum gradually becomes shorter relative to the body size. The dorsal fin is modified into a single spine located underneath the rostrum, which is moveable and acts as a lure to attract prey within striking distance.
It feeds on small crabs, shrimps, molluscs, worms, algae and juvenile fish. It tends to carry a high nematode parasite load.
Eggs and larvae are pelagic and metamorphose upon reaching the bottom