Body oval, compressed, with small head and terminal mouth.
Jaws extend back to the margin of eye; each jaw has a regular row of incisor like, round tipped teeth of a peculiar hockey-stock shape, i.e. the teeth have long horizontally directed bases converging toward the center of the mouth. A single continuous dorsal fin with 11 spines and 13 to 15 soft rays, pectoral and pelvic fins short, anal fin with 11 spines and 12 or 13 soft rays, large forked caudal fin. Outstanding scales of two different sizes, above and below the lateral line respectively; scales cover the bases of dorsal and anal fin rays. Gill-rakers on lower limb of first arch 19 to 22.
color : olive brown with longitudinal golden stripes on algal beds; bluish in pelagic environments. Two golden bands on the head, separated by a silver stripe under the eye.
size : common to 40-50 cm; largest size 91 cm (Gulf of Mexico).
The sister species K. sectatrix has a dorsal fin with 11 to 13 soft rays, an anal fin with 10 or 11 soft rays and 16-18 gill-rakers on lower limb of first gill arch.
BIOLOGY / ECOLOGY
Juveniles are pelagic, frequently associated to vessels or to flotsam and have omnivorous feeding habits. Adult fish are specialized herbivores, digesting macroalgae through microbial fermentation.
habitat : surface offshore waters (juveniles) and algal beds in coastal waters (adults).