Uncommon in the Solitary Islands Marine Park. Recorded from the Indo-Pacific region: the Red Sea south to Mozambique, east to Tahiti. In Australia recorded from mid Western Australia north, the Coral Sea and Great Barrier Reef in Queensland south to northern New South Wales, and including Lord Howe Island.
Frequents coral and rocky reef flats, to a depth of at least 20 m. Juveniles secretive on inshore reefs.
Vertical bands on body, spots and stripes on face. Basic colour pattern similar through all growth phases, smaller juvenile in lower photograph. Very large adults develop thick lips and posterior white bands may fade. Feed on small crustaceans, molluscs and echinoderms. Grows to 30 cm.
R. Stuart-Smith, G. Edgar, A. Green, I. Shaw, Tropical Marine Fishes of Australia. Reed New Holland Publishers, 2015. p.317.
Atlas of Living Australia website at https://bie.ala.org.au/search?q=Hemigymnus+fasciatus. Accessed 31/05/18.
FishBase. Froese, R. and D. Pauly. Editors. 2018. World Wide Web electronic publication. https://fishbase.ca/summary/Hemigymnus-fasciatus.html. Accessed 31/05/18.