Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Another batch of Ponies has arrived…early!

A full week ahead of when we expected, the babies have arrived. We were prepared for delivery the end of this week, but our male seems to think that 14 days is a more suitable gestation period than the “typical” 21 days.

If you look in the top righthand corner of this photo you can see a “Sharpie” mark on the side of the tank that provides a scale. If you look even closer around the seahorse you can see the tiny brine shrimp that the ponies are feeding on.
As with the last batch, it is interesting to note that there seems to be range of colors in the seahorses. I don't know if these are just random individuals changing color based on "mood", as the adults do, or if some are just lighter or darker.

Given the early arrival we didn’t have food ready right away, but 24hrs later (this AM), we have all the baby brine shrimp the ponies could ever want. Mike Patricio (the shellfish hatchery manager) has been nice enough to not only hatch the brine shrimp, but also provide algae to feed the shrimp so that, hopefully, we can make them that much more nutritious to the ponies.

We’ve come to realize pretty quickly that there is a VERY steep learning curve when it comes to getting the seahorses beyond the first couple weeks and we hope that this time we will be more successful.

All we can do is sit back and watch them eat and hope that what we provide is enough. We are also looking into raising copepods and gathering wild plankton to feed, but we weren’t too successful in pulling our plankton net last time out. I don’t know that there is much in the water this time of year.

The male is busy chasing around the female so I have not doubt that we will have another batch of babies in 2-3 weeks from now.



Anonymous said...

I have been asking this question of a number of people. Can eel grass be used to make Bio disel? There is enough coming out off Fire Island inlet.

Chris said...


I actually responded to an email from you I received through our interoffice system last (?) week about this. It is my understanding that eelgrass woud NOT make a good candidate for biodiesel, but I could be wrong. You could look up the chemical composition of eelgrass (Zostera marina) and compare it to whatever species is a good candidate (Corn?)and see how they compare.