Seahorses are fishes with very special characteristics and features. There are more than 47 different types of seahorses or species that have been discovered. Their trademark is wide and elongated necks and curly tails. They are also called water horse animals due to these features.
Seahorse - Physical Features
Seahorses vary in their height, ranging from 2 to 35 cm. They have bent necks, long heads, and unique curly tails. They have horse-like heads and small, toothless mouths.
Seahorses do not have scales like other fishes but have bony plates arranged in rings throughout their body. The bony plates act as armour, protecting them from any danger. They use their tails to hold onto things like plants or leaves under the water.
Physical Features of a Seahorse
You must be wondering how fast seahorses swim.
Seahorses can swim at a maximum speed of five feet or 1.5m per hour.
Seahorses can camouflage, which means they can hide or disguise themselves in their surroundings, so they are not visible. This helps shield them from bigger water animals like crabs and other fishes.
Seahorses are usually found in warm and temperate water bodies and like staying near plants, seaweeds, corals, etc. They hold onto the plants by using their curly tails.
They like to stay under waters that are close to the coast and shallow. They live for around 2-5 years.
Reproduction in seahorses is different from humans because male seahorses get pregnant instead of females. The male seahorses have a pouch-like structure in the front of the body, carrying the egg for 9 to 45 days. Seahorses, at birth, are very tiny and are not immediately released into the water.
A Pregnant Male Seahorse
Seahorses tend to live in warm waters and are kind, caring, and powerful. They are said to be intelligent and friendly. They are peaceful, do not harm others, and like to relax.
As they do not have a stomach or teeth, seahorses use their long noses to suck up food and swallow it whole. They eat other tiny fishes like copepods, krill, etc. Seahorses are quick and nab the other fish as they pass by. They also eat underwater plants like algae and plankton.
Interesting Seahorse Facts for Kids
Seahorses have excellent eyesight. They can look forwards and backwards at the same time.
They prefer to swim in pairs with their tails linked together.
Seahorses are difficult to spot due to their camouflage ability.
They have a unique identity mark: their crown (head structure). No two crowns are alike, just like human fingerprints!
A baby seahorse is called a ‘fry’.
Since they do not have stomachs or teeth, the food passes very quickly through their bodies, thus, they have a big appetite. Seahorses eat almost 30 meals per day.
A Seahorse Around a Plant
Seahorses or water horses are one of the most unique and beautiful fishes. They have exciting physical features; although small, they are friendly, smart, and caring. Seahorses are also one of the favourites of the marine animal kingdom!