Butterfly fish feed mainly on coral polyps and small sea anemones, but sometimes they also eat other invertebrates and algae. As a rule, they are kept in pairs, very rarely by groups (a flock of 14 individuals is marked).
The largest species of the genus grows up to 30 cm. They are widely distributed in the Indo-Pacific, from the Red Sea and East Africa to the Marquesas and Ducys, to the north to southern Japan, to the south to the Great Barrier Reef and the Lord Howe Islands, and Also in Micronesia. They live in the lagoons and on the outer side of the reefs at depths of 2 to 171 m.
The main background is white, with thin vertical dark strips. The middle part of the forehead is black with a white spot, hence a black vertical strip passes down through the eye. The posterior part of the dorsal fin, as well as the anal and caudal fins, are yellow. Along the posterior edge of the caudal fin is a brown band and a transparent edging. From the middle of the back to the posterior margin of the body, including the bases of the caudal and posterior parts of the anal fins, a broad black band on a yellow background.