Hippocampus abdominalis HIPABD-010400-CARMIT-001

This entry was posted on Tuesday, January 4th, 2000 and is filed under Seahorses, Spawning Reports.

The Breeder’s Registry© Information contained in this report is taken from submitted observations from aquarist unless noted otherwise (see comments). Information may be reproduced providing the Breeder’s Registry is cited.

Breeder ID: HIPABD-010400 -CARMIT-001

Date received: 1/4/00

Identification: Hippocampus abdominalis (Lesson, 1827)

Geographic origin: Southern Australia, New Zealand

Taxonomy: (After I.C.Z.N)

Length of time in captivity – male(yr): 1

Size male(mm): 152

Length of time in captivity – female (yr): 1

Size female (mm): 152 – 177

Broodstock notes:  12 kept in display; 3 male, 9 female. Captive bred from Scripps Institue of Oceanography

Physical differences: Male has pouch, female has deeper keeled belly

Adult diet: Live Mysidopsis bahai (Mysid shrimp), frozen mysid shrimp (M.Y.S.I.D. available from Piscene Energetics, P O Box742, Sandpoint, ID 83864-0742, USA) fed twice per day.

Pre-spawning activity: Numerous spawning events seen. Normal head thrusting and “dancing”

Time spawning began: usually in the morning

Area spawning occurred: bottom of tank

Frequency of spawning: Most mornings for weeks

Egg description: not observed

Incubation period: 28 days, birthing occurs in afternoon

Size of hatching larvae: 1 – 1.5 cm

Yolk sac present? no

Newly hatched appearance: small adults

Transfer / removal method: not indicated

Spawning tank size (liter):  22,700  (6000 gallons)  183 x 183 x 122 cm  (72 x 72 x 48 inches)

Sides of tank covered? Painted black

Lighting & photo period: 4 – 96watt Power Compact; 2 blue, 2 white, 12 hours. 2 – 40 watt actinic,  20 hours

Filtration: ETS 1700 skimmer, mechanical filter, UV sterilizer, ~ 800 pounds liverock.  Activated carbon is NOT used.

Additives and dosages:  ASW mix prepared at Henry Doorly Zoo.  Make-up water is pre-treated with reverse osmosis.

Water temperature (F): 60 – 62  °

Specific gravity: 30 – 32 ppt

pH: 8.1 – 8.3

Nitrate: 3 – 5 ppm

Larval rearing-

First food offered: baby brine shrimp, twice per day

Second food offered: Chopped mysid at 1 week, twice per day


1st week(%): 70%

2nd week: 50%

3rd week: 10%

Grew well until week 2. Chiller went down overnight and temperature rose 8 – 9° F and lost most.

Rearing tank size (liter) 110 (30 gallon) inline with display tank

Sides of tank covered? No

Lighting & photoperiod: 20 watt “daylight” bulb, 11 hours.

Filtration and parameters: same as adult tank

Comments: Supposed to be easy to raise.  If not for chiller mishap we would still have most.  Sometimes hard to convert to frozen foods.

Original description: First described in 1827 by R. P. Lesson. Espec’e  nouvelle d’Hippocampe,  ( A new species of Hippocaminae) in the Bulletin of Science and Natural Geography,(Fe’russac) v 12. 127-128.  Most recently validated by Gomon , 1997.

Vernacular name:  Pot-bellied seahorse

Word origin: Hippocampus (Greek), a fabulous sea monster hipp-e, -o, =us, (Greek) a horse.camp, =us, (Greek) , a sea monster. The species name abdominalis is from the Latin word abdomin  which is still in use today; and  the Latin root -alis meaning  pertaning to.  Thus pertasining to the abdomen, in reference to the  prominemnt belly.

About this report: Information contained in this report is taken from submitted observations. Taxonomy, Synonomy, Original description , Word origin and Suggested reading are provided by member(s) of The Breeder’s Registry staff. Information is presented under the belief that it is accurate. If you have information in addition to, or contrary to that presented you are encouraged to contact the Breeder’s Registry. Permission is granted for “one-time” personal use. Reproduction as distributed or accessible media is prohibited without prior written permission. All rights reserved. 2000

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