Birch Aquarium, in San Diego, California, announced two new members of its aquatic family on February 13. It has hatched a pair of weedy sea dragons. The aquarium is part of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography.
Though less than one inch long when born, this rare fish species can grow to 18 inches. It gets its name from its seaweed-like appearance. Weedy sea dragons are native to southern Australia. But due to climate change and pollution, some have been moved to aquariums to protect them from danger.
Jennifer Nero Moffatt is a senior director at Birch. “This is a momentous event,” she says. “We have spent over 25 years working with these animals and love that we have made the next steps to conserve this delicate species.”