The holotype of the Key brotula was collected by seine on an algae-covered shoal over coral rubble. The coral fragments were encrusted with organisms. The species usually is collected at depths of less than 9.8 ft (3 m), often by uprooting and shaking clumps of Halimeda. This secretive bythitid also may reside in reef crevices, rocky holes, and mangrove roots in shallow waters and out to the edge of the reef. It is rarely seen by divers and typically is collected only in research surveys at poison stations, sometimes locally abundant. For example, more than 15 individuals were collected at one station in Belize. The species probably is tolerant of large fluctuations in temperature and salinity.

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