Indo-Pacific: widespread in the Indian Ocean (Ref. 9793), ranging from East Africa south to Natal, South Africa (Ref. 5490) and east to Madagascar, Seychelles, Mauritius, Chagos Archipelago, and Maldives through the eastern Indian Ocean to French Polynesia and Pitcairn. Replaced by Scarus forsteni in most of the Pacific, with overlapping distributions in the Philippines, eastern Indonesia and Palau (Ref. 37816). Recently reported from Tonga (Ref. 53797).