The paleband spinecheek is a sleek, silver fish with a darker, spotted upper body. From its face, extending to its dorsal and caudal fins, are several pearly white stripes with blue iridescence.
Paleband spinecheeks inhabit shallow, sandy-bottomed waters near coral reefs. They are common along the East African coast, ranging from the Red Sea and Persian Gulf to South Africa.
They have good eyesight and are proficient predators, feeding on crustaceans, sea stars and smaller fish. Their habit of swimming rapidly, then coming a sudden stop before moving off again enables them to better survey their surroundings.
Their scientific name, Scolopsis ghanam, means "looks like a worm from Ghana". This is a misnomer, as the monocle bream is not found in Ghanaian waters.