Seahorses at the Aquarium of the Americas sport new name tags

Seahorses at the Aquarium of the Americas sport new name tags
Published: Jul. 14, 2016 at 1:00 AM CDT
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NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - The Audubon Institutes aquarium goes to great lengths to keep track of one of its popular attractions.

16 of the seahorses now sport tiny tags, attached with a small piece of filament, each with a different number.

"What we're trying to do is figure out who's dating who and who's going where," said Beth Firchau, Director of Husbandry at the Aquarium of the America's.

The sea horses are part of a special breeding program in conjunction with accredited aquariums across the country.

To populate the species and promote bio-diversity, they will keep track of which seahorses have a love connection.

For all their popularity, seahorses remain largely a mystery.

Scientists are not even certain of their numbers in the wild.

"A lot the species are not necessarily a severe species concern," Firchau said.  "We have a lot of data-deficient species, meaning we really don't know what their numbers are in the wild."

The technique has been used by fisheries managers for years on seahorses in the wild.
"So, these animals are actually being looked at as more than just a curiosity," Firchau said.  "We're actually studying them and doing some really good conservation work."