The Gold Spot Hogfish juveniles are yellow and have a black saddle with a white bar at the anterior edge on its back. Adults are mostly red with small yellow spots on the head, and a diffuse black saddle below and on the dorsal fin with a pale yellow bar preceding it.
It is a beneficial fish for a 900 L or larger reef tank as a youth, cleaning parasites off of its tank mates. With maturity, however, it will need to be in a 150 gallon or larger fish-only tank, or the reef will become its buffet. It is aggressive towards smaller, docile fish that are easily bullied.
The mature adult will eat snails, worms, mussels, small fish, shrimp, and squid.