Species encyclopedia

Long-snouted Seahorse

Hippocampus guttulatus


The long-snouted seahorse differs from other species for its long muzzle, a body sprinkled with white spots, and characteristic dermal cirri growing out of its head and dorsal ridge.

Its body colour can vary widely, ranging from dark brown to beige and sometimes even bright yellow or reddish. Like other species of seahorse, its body is covered with bony plates laid out in rings.

The long-snouted seahorse lives near eelgrass or posidonia meadows. It is a bottom-dweller, attaching itself to algae with its prehensile tail. It feeds on zooplankton (crustaceans and fish eggs and larvae) that it inhales using its pipette shaped mouth.


Mating begins with a special, lengthy ritual: with their tails hooked together, the partners rise up to the surface and come back down again several times.

When the male expels the water from his incubation pouch, the female transfers her eggs to him using her genital papilla. The eggs incubate for three weeks in the male’s pouch. He then uses muscular contractions to eject about 100 young measuring roughly 15 mm.

This species of seahorse is believed to be monogamous, living with the same partner for their whole lives.

Atlantic Ocean


Species encyclopedia

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