London seahorses venture west












There’s been another seahorse discovery in the River Thames and it seems they are heading west.

A couple of years ago seahorses were found in Dagenham, a suburb in east London. It came as something of a shock to find these delicate creatures living in the river which only a few decades ago was pronounced biologically dead. So, like reviving canaries in a mine, seahorses in the Thames spelled good news for the general health and well-being of the waters flowing through the UK’s crowded capital city.

Now folks from the Environment Agency have found a young seahorse in the next borough along the Thames: Greenwich (where GMT comes from). Ok, it’s not that far from Dagenham, but it is important that a 5cm littleun’ has been found so far up the river because it suggests that there could be a breeding population in the vicinity.

And what’s a seahorse doing in a river? Well, truth is, while they are salt water dwellers and don’t survive in fully fresh conditions, seahorses can tolerate a range of salinities. This far inland the tidal influence is still strong enough to bring in salty ocean water and keep seahorses happy.

But the Thames isn’t the only river where seahorses have been found lurking. The Hudson has seahorses – including one caught by the Beczak Environmental Education Centre in 2009 at River Mile 18 in Yonkers.

And members of the Hippocampus genus can also be found in the Swan River in Western Australia, as this video shows:


If you’ve seen a seahorse in a river the Seamonster team would love to hear from you – send us a message below.


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