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Bohadschia argus is sausage-shaped with a smooth, tough, leathery skin and can grow to 2 feet (0.61 m) in length. It is a greyish-brown colour, paler below, with distinctive dark eye-spots surrounded by white haloes. There are several rows of tube feet on the underside. Surrounding the mouth at the anterior end is a ring of paddle-shaped, black tentacles fringed with white. The anus, at the posterior end, has Cuvierian tubules situated at its base which are readily ejected as sticky threads if the animal is disturbed or handled. These contain toxins which deter predators and are irritating to human skin. The small emperor shrimp (Periclimenes imperator) is often associated with Bohadschia argus and may help keep it clear of ectoparasites.
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