Common in the Solitary Islands Marine Park. Distributed throughout the Indo-Pacific region: from the Red Sea to the Hawaiian, Line, Marquesan, and Tuamoto islands, north to Ryukyu Islands, south to Lord Howe; including Micronesia. Range extends to Southeast Atlantic, Algoa Bay, South Africa. In Australia recorded from the central coast of Western Australia, around the tropical north, the Coral Sea and Great Barrier Reef in Queensland, south to southern New South Wales.
Frequents areas of sand or sand-rubble areas, lagoons and seaward reefs. Often buried in sand with only eyes and nostrils exposed. Depth 1 - 91 m.
Has a light blue/grey stripe down the side from above the pectoral fin to the tail base, often uninterrupted by dark bars, and a row of rectangular white blotches on lower half of body . Sometimes also has yellowish caudal fin. Feeds on shrimps and small fishes. Small juvenile (6 cm) in top photograph, adult below. Grows to 24 cm.
R. Stuart-Smith, G. Edgar, A. Green, I. Shaw, Tropical Marine Fishes of Australia. Reed New Holland Publishers, 2015. p.47.
Atlas of Living Australia website at https://bie.ala.org.au/search?q=synodus+dermatogenys. Accessed 06/07/18.
FishBase. Froese, R. and D. Pauly. Editors. 2018. World Wide Web electronic publication. https://fishbase.ca/summary/synodus-dermatogenys.html. Accessed 06/07/18.