A herd of Endangered White’s seahorses
By Kateley Nikiforuk
This month we’re highlighting a whole herd of White’s seahorses (Hippocampus whitei), thanks to scale-blazing scuba diver Tony Strazzari! Despite only joining iSeahorse on May 18th, Strazzari has posted over 140 seahorse observations under the username of tonydiver, backdated all the way to 2014. He is now in third place (and encroaching on second) for the most observations posted to iSeahorse, solely surpassed by Guylian Seahorses of the World and Projects Abroad Cambodia. This is especially impressive considering that the latter two are composed of many contributors.
White’s seahorses. Photos by Tony Strazzari.
An avid diver circa 1991, Tony has posted over 5000 observations to iNaturalist, featuring a diverse array of aquatic species. As far as seahorses go, he has also captured tiger tail seahorses (H. comes), Denise’s pygmy seahorses (H. denise), and Bargibant’s pygmy seahorses (H. bargibanti) on camera, but the vast majority have been White’s seahorses. H. whitei, which can only be found in Australian waters, was declared Endangered by the IUCN Red List within the last year, so we are delighted to have more information about this species.
While Tony certainly deserves recognition for his contribution to Hippocampus science and conservation, it was difficult to choose one photographer to focus on, as this has been a particularly fruitful month for seahorse observations. In June alone, we received nearly 200! We are thrilled about this – thanks to everyone who helped make this happen. Keep the syngnathid snapshots coming!
View the original observations of the White’s seahorses featured here:
View the rest of tonydiver’s iNaturalist observations