While I would not consider this species a true “pygmy”, its slightly smaller stature compared to many other waspfish has resulted in this fish being referred to as such in some circles. This is a very pretty fish, with bright red-orange pectorals, and a white body mottled with grey, black and red/brown markings. There is always a black spot between the fifth and sixth dorsal spines, and a white spot above the lateral line below the black spot, which seems to be more pronounced in males. The dorsal spines are incised, with those of the male being more deeply so, and longer than those of the female. The dorsal spines of the male are also more curved and backswept than the female’s spines. Males are also larger than females in terms of body size.
In our experience, this fish can sometimes be a bit “bossy” to other fish its size, but once the pecking order is established, this is generally not an issue. They are strong feeders, and in our experience, fairly easily weaned.