West Australian Seahorse, Hippocampus subelongatus Click to enlarge image
A West Australian Seahorse at a depth of 15m, Mosmans, Swan River, Western Australia, 30 October 2004. Image: William White
© William White

Fast Facts

  • Classification
    Species
    subelongatus
    Genus
    Hippocampus
    Family
    Syngnathidae
    Order
    Syngnathiformes
    Class
    Actinopterygii
    Subphylum
    Vertebrata
    Phylum
    Chordata
  • Size Range
    It grows to about 25 cm in length.

Introduction

The West Australian Seahorse is a large species that is endemic to Western Australian waters.

Identification

Body colouration is quite variable. Individuals can be brown, white, red, orange or purple, but can also change colour.

Habitat

The species lives in muddy, silty habitats of less than 20 m in depth.

Distribution

The map below shows the Australian distribution of the species based on public sightings and specimens in Australian Museums. Click on the map for detailed information. Source: Atlas of Living Australia.



Conservation status

The West Australian Seahorse is protected species. It is listed under CITES Appendix II.

References

  1. Hoese, D.F., Bray, D.J., Paxton, J.R. & G.R. Allen. 2006. Fishes. In Beesley, P.L. & A. Wells. (eds) Zoological Catalogue of Australia. Volume 35. ABRS & CSIRO Publishing: Australia. parts 1-3, pages 1-2178.

Further reading

Moore, G. Fish in focus - The West Australian Seahorse. Western Australian Museum Fish blog. Accessed 29 March 2013. http://museum.wa.gov.au/explore/blogs/museumfish/fish-focus-west-australian-seahorse