Horses under the Water

A seahorse


If you get a chance to look at them in a sea world or while you are snorkelling you’ll notice that these tiny creatures of the sea  bear an uncanny resemblance to the equine species. However, they are quite tiny. They are somewhere between 0.6 inches (1.5 centimeters) to 14 inches (35 centimeters) long. Why don’t you get a measuring tape to see how big is that?

A Seahorse's face looks much like that of a horse, that's why the name

There is not one but many unique things about seahorses. Unlike most fishes, they swim upright. They move  by using a small fin on their back. These little creatures can flap the back fin up to 35 times per second! How many times can you blink your eyes in one second?  A smaller set of fins located at the back of the head give them direction. They have special curly, coiled tails to stay put at one place. It helps them to latch onto seaweed and coral.

Seahorses swin in an upright position

However, their upright bodies and tiny wings make them rather inefficient swimmers. They often die of exhaustion in rough waters. Seahorses don’t have teeth, they suck tiny sea organisms in through their mouths. They don’t even have stomachs and and digest their food remarkably quickly.  Because of this, they have to eat almost all the time!

Can you move your eyes independently of each other? You can’t!! Seahorses can move their eyes independently of each other.

And now the most stunning fact about sea horses. Like how in humans and animals, babies grow in their mothers tummies, seahorses are the only animal species on Earth in which the the unborn young grow in a pouch that the fathers have. The pouch is called a brood pouch.

Sadly, seahorse population is becoming alarmingly low. They are being fished in large numbers to be used in Asian traditional medicines.

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