The Seahorse Tail: A Geometric Beauty

New scientific research adds insight into the benefit of a seahorse’s square-shaped tail.

Published July 22, 2015

Unlike those of most animals, the cross-section of a seahorse tail is shaped like a square prism rather than the usual cylinder. Their skeleton consists of a bony armor that’s arranged into several ring like segments shaped like L’s around the vertebra.

seahorse tail
Muscles attached to the vertebral column force the bony L-shaped segments in the seahorse’s tail to provide motion for grasping and holding onto objects such as sea grasses, mangrove roots, and coral reefs which camouflage them from evading predators.
The seahorse’s tail is a unique structure that allows many advantages than cylinder tails such as flexibility, motion, and the grasping of objects. 

Longsnout Seahorse

Due to the effective nature of the tails, seahorse tails are now becoming inspiration for search-and-rescue equipment, medicine, and more!
To learn more about this study, check out Science Magazine’s report.

Previous Post

Featured Stories

national-aquarium-staff-holding-rescue-sea-turtle-on-beach Animal Rescue Update: February Sea Turtle Release

Yesterday, National Aquarium Animal Rescue released 34 sea turtles on the Canaveral National Seashore in Florida!

Read the full story

artificial-oyster-reef-in-inner-harbor Harbor Happenings: Artificial Oyster Reef

The National Aquarium is taking another step to revitalize Baltimore’s Inner Harbor and attract native species with a new artificial oyster reef using shells from the Oyster Recovery Partnership!

Read the full story

Related Stories

Life in the Arctic

Published January 13, 2018

End of Year Roundup: Baby Animals

Published December 12, 2017