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Last winter, numerous seahorses washed ashore. The hypothermic creatures were found by passersby and eventually brought to Diergaarde Blijdorp, where they could recover. Now that the sea water has warmed up, it was time to release them back into the wild.

Last Monday, four short-snouted seahorses were released into the Oosterschelde by staff from Diergaarde Blijdorp and Stichting Anemoon. Just as with their rescue, the release process was carried out meticulously. The seahorses were not released directly into the water but were first placed in containers to acclimate to the temperature and salinity of the Oosterschelde. After this acclimatization, the container with the seahorses was submerged. Once in the open water, the seahorses immediately clung to the sticks used by cuttlefish to lay their eggs.

In recent years, seahorses have been increasingly found in and around the Netherlands. This increase is likely caused by the warming of the North Sea, which shifts their distribution range. Few people know that seahorses are classified as fish, with the short-snouted seahorse being the most common species here. During and after storms, these creatures sometimes wash ashore. At Diergaarde Blijdorp’s Oceanium, they are given the opportunity to recover.

The release of the seahorses aligns perfectly with the mission and vision of Diergaarde Blijdorp and fits seamlessly into the current campaign "Save the Underwater Treasures," which aims to raise awareness of the unique underwater world.

If you find a seahorse on the beach, always contact Diergaarde Blijdorp (+31104431495) or Ecomare Texel (+31222317741). They will ensure that the animal is rescued and, if possible, released back into the wild.