Birth Announcement

The Birch Aquarium is throwing a baby shower!  They have just welcome two very rare babies – weedy sea dragons.  Apparently sea dragons  are notoriously difficult to breed in captivity and the aquarium has been trying for years.

Sea dragons, as you can see, look like little flotsams of seaweed and are actually distant cousins to the seahorse.  The Birch actually acquired their first sea dragons after years of successful work with other sea horse varieties.  In the wild, most sea dragon species call the waters of Australia home.

The two new additions are about an inch long and will feed primarily on shrimp, like their parents.  At this point, it is now known the gender of the babies; according to the Birch, they “likely won’t know until they reach sexual maturity in a few years. “This bit of sea dragon news caught my eye because we have sea dragons at the Minnesota Zoo; we’ve had them for years, so I didn’t realize they were rare.  In fact, while YA is joyfully trailing her hands in the shark/ray pool (which she can do for a LONG time), I almost always wander over to watch the sea dragons.  Their alcove is kept dark and they are mesmerizing as they float through their habitat, their “weeds” floating gracefully around them.

Do you have a favorite exotic animal?

27 thoughts on “Birth Announcement”

  1. Not knowing what a sea dragon is, I just looked it up. They are beautiful. One would never know it was an animal just seeing a ‘sea weed’ floating by. Thanks for the instruction. I’ve learned something new.

    Liked by 6 people

  2. WordPress has been acting snotty toward me lately. Today it won’t let me like Linda’s comment. Maybe everyone knows this already, but her sea birds are blue footed boobies. Males with bright blue feet do well with the ladies, I’ve read. Hmm, that’s something I never thought to try back when I was lonely and single.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I like big cats and otters. My second cousin in Madelia is a luthier and reptile enthusiast. He raises snakes to be thoughtfully homed with just the right people.

    I am at the surgery center right now as my friend is being prepped for her rotator cuff procedure. I am somewhere in Chaska. They don’t allow anyone into the surgery waiting room, so I am in the enormous first floor atrium area. It is very deserted. At least I have wifi.

    Liked by 4 people

  4. I went for a 4 wheeler ride yesterday. Took the dogs for a run at the same time. Down along our creek I found two empty mussel shells.
    For all the years I’ve lived here, I had not seen them until maybe 4 or 5 years ago I found a couple large, like 5″, ones. Then the next year another couple. Then these two smaller ones today. All in the same area of the creek.
    Just looking them up on the DNR website, they say you shouldn’t collect dead ones either. Odd… leave the shell? for the mice to eat? They’re up on the bank several feet… Steve? Any thoughts? And I’m supposed to have a fishing license. Odd rules.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Mussels are not a topic I’ve explored, and the regs here make no sense to me. If you found empty shells, my guess would be raccoons got the mussels and left the shells. If you are seeing smaller shells, one guess might be that mussels are reproducing better now, for whatever reason (management, cleaner water, whatever). Finding the shells where you found others before suggests there is a “bed” in that area of the creek where mussels successfully reproduce. Which is cool.

      Liked by 3 people

  5. The blue footed boobie are a big part of the avian inhabitants near Kino in Mexico where we have spent some winter time. They are fun birds to observe because of their blue feet, but I admit, I’m more attracted to the avian skills of the pelicans.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I understand American White pelicans come to Minnesota, but I can’t say I’ve ever seen one. At least not close enough to be able to identify it.

      There is a Pelican Lake in central Minnesota.


      1. Some years ago, alerted by an article in the Pioneer Press, I drove along Warner Road to observe a very large group of white pelicans in an area close to the intersection of Warner Road and Highway 61. Apparently that’s one place they stop on their migration to wherever they’re going. I have to admit that I found it a lot more interesting to watch the grey pelicans dive bombing the surface of the Sea of Cortes for their dinner. They are such exquisite flyers.

        Liked by 1 person

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