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New Weedy Sea Dragons at the Aquarium

Come visit the ABQ BioPark's newest resident.

April 18, 2018 - There are dragons in the water!

But these dragons don’t fly—instead, they float along the southern coast of Australia. And now they're in the middle of the desert on display at the ABQ BioPark Aquarium.

The weedy sea dragon is a relative of the sea horse and it gets its name for its resemblance to a dragon and its leaf-life appendages that look like the swaying seaweed of their habitat. These appendages act as camouflage—as the sea dragons drift slowly through the water, they blend into seagrass beds. However, these seagrass beds are on the decline, putting weedy sea dragon populations at risk.

weedy-sea-dragon

Like their seahorse cousins, sea dragon males carry eggs. Instead of a pouch, sea dragons carry the babies-to-be on their tails. First, a female lays about 120 eggs onto the brood patch on the underside of the male’s tail. Then the eggs are fertilized and carried by the male for about a month before they hatch. Hatchlings are independent right from birth.

The ABQ BioPark welcomed four weedy sea dragons in April. They are located near the sea jellies at the Aquarium. Come take a look! 

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