D. S. Jordan & C. H. Gilbert, 1882
The dwarf seahorse (Hippocampus zosterae) is a species of seahorse. It is found in the Bahamas and the United States. Its natural habitat is subtidal aquatic beds. It is threatened by habitat loss. According to Guinness World Records, it is the slowest moving fish, with a top speed of about five feet per hour (152 cm per hour).
It is most often white in color but can range from tan, brown, yellow and green. In the wild, it often has small skin growths called cirri that resemble algae.
The dwarf seahorse only reaches 2 inches (51 mm) and is not an aggressive feeder. Therefore, it is typically kept in small aquariums (5 to 10 US gallons (19 to 38 l; 4.2 to 8.3 imp gal)). The dwarf seahorse can be fed brine shrimp nauplii, although it will also eat copepods and other shrimp larvae. Because of its short digestive tract, food must be available to them all day, making it a difficult species to keep. Unlike most marine fish, it will readily breed in the aquarium. The seahorse fry can be kept in the same aquarium as the adults in a dwarf seahorse dedicated tank. The dwarf seahorse has a gestation period of 10–14 days and can live up to over 2 years in captivity. Though they are small in size, they are not the smallest seahorse, the Pygmy Seahorse (Hippocampus bargibanti) is smaller.
- Project Seahorse 2003. Hippocampus zosterae. 2006 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Downloaded on 4 August 2007.
- Keeping Dwarf Seahorses as Pets
- peteducation.com Page on Dwarf Seahorses
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