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Description: Body relatively thin, wide and long with a medium eye and a terminal, small mouth. Pectoral fins medium, reach to vent. Pelvic fins very short. Dorsal and anal-fin bases long, caudal peduncle short and wide. Melanophores limited to the fin-ray membranes, typically on the last few dorsal-fin rays and a matching group on the last anal-fin rays. Each melanophore group covers from three to five fin rays. Transitional recruits of H. maculipinna show more variable markings than other labrids. Those individuals in grassbeds are uniformly green, while those on reefs have a distinct black stripe along the side of the body.