Seahorses: Unbridled Fun, Newport Aquarium’s newest exhibit, features 10 species of seahorses and their relatives. Here are 10 Fun Facts:
1. Seahorses, sea dragons, pipefish, razorfish and trumpetfish are all part of the Sygnathid family, which means “fused jaws” in Greek.
2. Seahorses are the only animals where the male becomes pregnant! After a courtship dance, the female deposits her eggs into the male’s pouch. The male will fertilize them, carry them, and then eventually give birth.
3. A baby seahorse is called a “fry.”
4. Seahorse fins beat at rates of 30-70 times per second! This is a similar speed to a hummingbird’s wings.
5. Unlike most other fish, seahorses do not have scales. Instead, they have hard bony plates that help them stay upright when swimming.
6. Seahorses have a prehensile tail like a monkey!
7. A seahorse’s tail looks rounded, but it’s actually a square shape. The flat edge of their tail gives them a better grip and keeps their tail from rotating in the waves. Scientists are looking into how this design could help with prosthetics for people.
8. Seahorses have chameleon-like eyes! They can move their eyes in two different directions at the same time! This allows them to look for food with one eye and look-out for predators with the other.
9. Seahorses have a long, straw-like snout to suck in their food. They open their mouths so quick that it works almost like a vacuum.
10. Seahorses are an “indicator species” – where there is a healthy seahorse population, it indicates a healthy habitat for all coastal animals.