The Biggest Seahorse Vs The Smallest
It’s only been in the past decade that we’ve discovered the ocean is teaming with pygmy seahorses. This is largely because they’re so small, they went undetected for years. The smallest one Hippocampus satomiae, described in 2009 is just a hair over 11mm. That’s really small.
By way of comparison, the largest seahorse, the Pot Belly Seahorse Hippocampus abdominalis can get up to 32 cm, or just over 12.5inches. It’s newborn fry are 16mm. Yes, the babies it has are larger than Satomi’s Pygmy Seahorse, H. satomiae. That’s some wild stuff.
The sizes here are my best approximation. I may have actually made H. satomiae a little bigger, but I didn’t want to overshot the target, and working with images to measure seahorses isn’t an exact science. Still, I’m sure you get the idea. These guys are small.
All pygmy seahorses are small, under 1 inch. What is amazing is that as far as we know, they still have live births, just like larger seahorses. But because they’re so small, they don’t have a pouch, they just incubate the eggs inside their body.
Here is another pygmy seahorse, H. denise, for comparison. Keep in mind, the seahorse pictured below is still bigger than H. satomiae by almost 5 millemeters.
And a Pot Belly seahorse next to a diver: