5 Seahorse Facts For Kids
Seahorses are pretty cool critters. When you look at them, they definitely look a little bit like a horse in their facial structure. These animals, however, are actually fish. They always live in the water, breathe through gills that they have, and they have a swim bladder too. What makes them different from other fish is their long tail that kind of looks like a snake and the fact that they have no caudal fins.
Want to know more about these fun animals? Here are some additional facts!
1. Eyes Like a Seahorse
Seahorses have incredibly good eyesight. Not only can they see from far away, but they can also have their eyes work independently of each other. This means a seahorse can look up and down at the same time! Since they tend to hunt for food based on what they see, this gives seahorses a natural advantage while out in the sea.
2. Like an Elephant
The snout of the seahorse is a lot like the trunk of an elephant. They use their very thin, long snouts to probe in different little places to find some food. When they do find some, they suck it up through their snout just like an elephant will suck up water into its trunk. There snouts can also expand so that bigger prey can still be consumed.
3. Some Teeth Would Be Nice
Seahorses typically eat small shrimp and other crustaceans throughout the day. You can find an adult seahorse eating up to 50 times per day! The only problem is that seahorses don’t have any teeth that can help them chew their food. This means that once they have sucked up the shrimp through their snout, they have to work on disintegrating the food in order to digest it.
If you think that’s a lot of food, then here’s a fun fact about baby seahorses: they can eat up to 3,000 shrimp every day.
4. The Boys Give Birth
Seahorses are the only known animal that has the boys give birth to children instead of the girls. The girl seahorse will transfer her eggs to the boy seahorse and then he’ll carry them until they are born. Seahorses will also pair up for life. They will meet up first thing in the morning to reinforce their bonding that has been developed and then repeat this process every day. When they meet each other, they will actually change colors and this display can last for up to an hour.
5. A Body of Armor
Seahorses are one of the few fish that actually has an exoskeleton. Instead of having scales, the outside of their bodies are made up of an external side of hard, bony plates that are fused together. From their exoskeleton, a seahorse can then grow up appendages that are called cirri for camouflage because swimming is not one of the things that a seahorse is good at doing.
What have you learned about seahorses today? These cool animals are one of the most interesting animals that are in the sea today. By learning more about them, we can protect their habitats and allow them to enjoy long, happy lives.