The shell of this species is usually brown, and is marked with many low, flat-topped ribs which run parallel to the five to seven open respiratory pores that are elevated above the shell’s surface. The inside of the shell is an iridescent blue and green.

The range of Haliotis fulgens includes southern California and most of the Pacific coast of Baja California, Mexico. The size of the adult shell of this species varies between 75 mm and 255 mm. This species is found in shallow water on open/exposed coast from low intertidal to at least 30 feet (9 m) and perhaps as deep as 60 feet (18 m). Individuals are found in rock crevices, under rocks and other cryptic cavities.

Like all abalone, green abalone are herbivores. They feed mostly on drift algae and prefer fleshy red algae. Predators of this species other than mankind are sea otters, starfish, large fishes and octopuses. Green abalones are subject to a chronic, progressive and lethal disease: withering abalone syndrome or abalone wasting disease, leading to mass mortality.

Green abalone have separate sexes and broadcast spawn from early summer through early fall. Maturity is reached at 2.4 to 5 inches (61–128 mm) length or 5 to 7 years. Lifespan is up to 30 years or more.

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