While diving off the coast of eastern Australia to conduct research with conservation group Project Seahorse, Clayton and Meagan spotted a pregnant White’s seahorse — a pregnant male seahorse, to be exact. The lucky divers were able to capture the mesmerizing delivery on camera using a GoPro, and the results are fascinating (albeit a bit cringe-worthy for more squeamish viewers). Scientists say it’s very rare to watch seahorse births take place in the wild.
It’s surprising but true: the male seahorse is the one who carries the babies. Mom.me writes, “Although the male carries the eggs, he doesn’t make them. After a male and female seahorse spend time courting, the female deposits her eggs inside the male’s pouch. He fertilizes the eggs inside the pouch. His pouch is a complex organ that regulates temperature, blood flow and water salinity for the eggs as they hatch so the babies are as prepared as possible for life in the ocean. Depending on the species, seahorses can deliver from five to more than 1,000 babies at a time.”
As seahorses continue to thrive in this part of Australian waters, these divers are on a mission to find out what types of underwater life, if any, contribute to their success as a species.
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