WHAT IS IT? The colloquial name of this gorgeous new species was coined by divers who thought it looked a little porcine. But it’s no more a pig than it is a horse. It’s a pygmy seahorse. And there’s no doubt it’s small – no bigger than 16mm – which may help explain why it has been missed until now.
WHERE IS IT? Hippocampus japapigu is the fifth species of pygmy seahorse to have been recorded in Japanese waters. The blotches of colour provide camouflage among algae-encrusted rocks in shallow water. It seems to live in pairs, because whenever one individual was spotted, another was often found lurking nearby.
The ‘Japan pig’ pygmy seahorse can be found in coral and algae reefs.