Male seahorse gives birth to 460 babies at Birch Aquarium


A male Giant Pacific Seahorse gave birth to 460 baby seahorses at Birch Aquarium at Scripps between 7 p.m. Aug. 6 and 8 a.m. on Aug. 7.


The Pacific Seahorse babies are about the length of a pinkie nail and the width of a pen tip. The mother and father seahorses were collected from San Diego Bay on April 2, 2008.

The babies will be raised within Birch Aquarium’s award-winning Seahorse Propagation Program and distributed to aquariums worldwide, with the intent to minimize the number of seahorses taken from the wild.

The public will be able to view several of the babies in the aquarium’s nursery, once they get a bit bigger. Mom and Dad are on display now.

Visit Birch Aquarium at Scripps

Location: 2300 Expedition Way, La Jolla, Calif.

Phone: (858) 534-FISH

Web site:

Hours: 9 a.m.-5 p.m. daily

Admission: $11 adult for 18 and older; $9 senior for 60 and older; $7.50 for youth, 3-to-17-years old; free children for 2 and under; and free for Scripps Oceanographic Society Members

Parking: Birch Aquarium offers three-hour courtesy parking.


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  • The female deposits eggs into the male’s small pouch, and then leaves. Out of the entire animal kingdom, these are the only animals in which the male has babies!
  • Seahorses gained international protection on May 15, 2004
  • What do South American Spider Monkeys, Ringtail Opossums and seahorses have in common? They all have prehensile tails.
  • Seahorses are members of the Teleost suborder, or bony fish.
  • Seahorses usually live in the tropics or along temperate coasts.
  • The average height of a full-grown sea horse is 2-8 inches.Seahorses also vary in color, including orange, red, yellows, grey, and greens.
  • Seahorses can come in patterns like “zebra stripes” and spots.
  • Seahorses change color to blend in with their surroundings.
  • Seahorses feed on small living animals such as daphnia, cyclops, larvae of water insects, or mysids.
  • Seahorses like to swim in pairs linked by their tales.
  • Seahorses cannot curl their tails backwards.
  • Seahorses belong to the vertabra group, meaning they have an interior skeleton.
  • The small dorsal fins propel it through the water in an upright position, while it beats them back and forth, almost as fast as a humming bird flapping its wings.
  • Seahorses usually mate under a full moon.
  • The pectoral fins control turning and steering. When resting, the seahorse curls its tail around seaweed, to keep it from floating away...
  • Seahorse natural predators are crabs, tuna, skates and rays.
  • Seahorses are loyal and mate for life.
  • During mating, the Seahorses utter musical