Build a seahorse safe haven

a seahorse built in LEGO bricks

The issue – Ocean pollution

Oceans are awesome…because not only can you travel across them to places far, far away, they are also home to bajillions of amazing plants and sea creatures, including seahorses. These tiny fish (yes, actual fish!) are beautiful and really unique! Seahorses are one of the few fish that swims upright, they use cunning camouflage to blend in with their surroundings and the males are the ones who have babies! Wow!

Seahorses are found in waters around the world but coral reefs are one of their favourite habitats. Coral reefs are a very important ecosystem on our planet and they aren’t just home to lovely seahorses! Thousands of types of fish and other marine life depend on coral reefs too. Sadly, coral reefs are affected by climate change. As seas get warmer and human activity creates more pollution, this has a huge impact on coral reefs and it affects seahorses too. But climate change isn’t the only threat to seahorse populations. They are also in danger because of too much fishing as tiny seahorses can get caught in huge fishing nets. What can be done to help them?

Help for seahorses

Luckily, there are things we can do to help seahorses and protect their coral reef homes. Some organisations have created Marine Protected Areas and ‘no-take’ zones. These safe areas protect seahorse habitats like coral reefs and stop people from disturbing seahorses or taking them from the ocean.

So, our challenge for you is…

Create an invention that protects seahorses and their habitats!
Seahorses need your help and great ideas to protect them from pollution, rising ocean temperatures and fishing. Your amazing invention could be for seahorses living on a coral reef, or in one of the other habitats where seahorses live, such as shallow weedy areas. It’s your choice! If you need some inspiration, check out the fact boxes to spark ideas or do some research of your own on how we can protect stunning seahorses!

Facts

  • BLENDING IN

    Seahorses avoid predators by using camouflage! They can turn themselves into the colour of underwater plants near them and this allows seahorses to blend into the background so that they disappear from hungry predators. Amazing!
  • FEEDING ZONES

    Seahorses anchor themselves to seaweed, seagrasses and corals using their long tails. Then they use their long snouts to suck up food like a vacuum cleaner! Seahorses eat plankton and small crustaceans but they don’t have teeth or a stomach, so they have to eat almost constantly to stay alive. Gulp!
  • SEAHORSE NURSERIES

    The male seahorse carries the seahorse eggs in his pouch until they hatch. He can give birth to up to 1,500 fully-formed, miniature seahorses! Incredible!