Bright and beautiful: see the seahorses
Some of the Southern Ocean's most beautiful animals are now on display in Melbourne Aquarium's brand new exhibit, Seahorse Pier.
The exhibit is the world's largest collection of seahorses, pipefish, razorfish and seadragons.
More than 100 animals from 25 species of the seahorse family are on display in nine tanks filled with colour and movement.
Courting southern pot-bellied seahorses are first to feature, the males proudly bloating their pouches before launching into an underwater dance.
Brittle starfish cling to vibrant sea fan coral, flailing their long arms in search of sustenance.
The exhibit is also home to the breeding program of Victoria's marine emblem, the weedy seadragon. Animals reared here populate aquariums all around the world.
Each species of seahorse boast unique coronets, the extravagant crowns atop their heads.
Exhibit manager Alison Edmunds said she was "over the moon" to see seahorse numbers continually growing inside the tanks.
"These seahorses are underwater rabbits," she said. "Our biggest task has become looking after ever-increasing numbers of offspring."