The Arc-eye hawkfish (Paracirrhites arcatus), as with other hawkfish, are named for their behavior of perching themselves in strategic raised locations on the reef. The name, arc eye, or arcatus, meaning “arched”, refers to the bright orange marking around the eyes. The tails are rounded and truncated. Their pectoral fins are large and scale less.
They are always usually solitary and will defend their territory against others of their species. Only in the mating season in spring are they seen in pairs or occasionally groups of three. This fish is a predatory carnivore, as its name suggests. Its main diet consists of small fish and crustaceans such as shrimps and crabs. They also take larger planktonic organisms that pass them by.