Body compressed with a large abdomen, completely encased in bony rings; snout relatively long, tubular; tail long, prehensile; top of head often with filaments. Coloured to match surrounding sponges and macroalgae - usually yellowish, to red and brown, often with irregular darker spots and a broadly banded tail. To 30 cm.
Bigbelly Seahorses often cling to sponges, macroalgae such as kelp holdfasts, and other structures on reefs. They are the largest and most common seahorse in southern waters, and are locally abundant in some areas, including under piers in Port Phillip Bay.
A range of habitats from low rocky reefs in shallow estuaries, to deep tidal channels and deeper coastal reefs, in depths of 0-100 m.
New Zealand and south-eastern Australia.
Recorded in Australia
- DSE Advisory List : Not listed
- EPBC Act 1999 : Not listed
- IUCN Red List : Data Deficient
- Fisheries Act 1995 : Protected Aquatic Biota