The doctorfish is found in Mexico and the Caribbean, where it is most often eaten. It is a dark, often blue-grey to dark brown, but can change its colour and lighten considerably. This will depend on its habitat, being darker nearer reefs and paler over sandy bottoms. It has a sharp, scalpel-like spine located on either side of the body on the caudal peduncle. The teeth, which can be seen in this photograph, are spatula-like in shape and are used for scraping algae off the rocks. They reach up 20-30 cm (12") in length. The flesh is of good quality but, if the fish have been feeding from dead corals or algae there is a faint possibility of some slight and temporary poisoning to the person who consumes the fish.

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