Discover the world of the Tiny Seahorse – FREE Download!
These wonderful creatures live in shallow tropical waters. While we refer to them as “horses” due to their resemblance to certain land animals, they are actually members of the pipefish family. Small, toothless, they use their snouts to suck up tiny fish, plankton and minuscule crustacean-type animals adrift in the current. They are specialists in camoflauge, which helps them survive in the wild. In fact, seahorses have specialized structures in their skin cells, called chromatophores. These structures allow seahorses to mimic the color of their surroundings, making them harder to be seen by predators and helping them ambush prey.
Unlike most fish, some seahorses are believed to remain with the same mates for life. After a lengthy courtship, the female seahorse transfers her mature eggs into the male’s brood pouch, where they are fertilized. The eggs hatch several weeks later and the male gives birth to hundreds of babies.
Did you know?
Seahorses face threats from bycatch, habitat degradation, and capture for black market and traditional medicine. Because their diet includes small bottom-dwelling organisms, removing seahorses can disrupt delicate ecosystems.
Let’s get creative!
Use colors to show how seahorses change and camouflage themselves in their environment.
Use the empty spaces on your coloring page to draw your own seahorses with lots of spiny plates and long snouts for feeding.
Can you identify the other fish inhabiting this reef? Research their colors and habits before coloring them… what are some of their characteristics?
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