10/10Photograph: Julie Larsen MaherThese small fries are the latest success story of the New York Aquarium's breeding program, especially as pot-bellied seahorses are a threatened species according to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora.
Seahorse babies are not of women born, and consequently the scourge of Shakespearean characters called Macbeth. The female deposits eggs in the male’s brood pouch, whereupon he fertilizes them. The male then holds the eggs for about a month until they hatch and swim free.
TONY's patent-pending cute-o-meter: 6/10
Baby alpacas and river otters and babydoll sheep—oh my giddy aunt, the cuteness is overwhelming. To try to calm ourselves, we decided to apply a rational scientific method to quantify the adorableness of the new zoo animals in New York, both newborns and recent acquisitions. Presenting the TONY patent-pending cute-o-meter, which is basically a cardboard box full of staffers cooing over photos of cute animals while an intern takes readings from a noise dosimeter.
In all seriousness though, the successful breeding of species by the Wildlife Conservation Society (wcs.org) is no mean feat, and we heartily commend its efforts. Additionally, the acquisition of animals like the endangered Chacoan peccaries helps to educate zoogoers on these creatures and their threatened habitat. You should strongly consider donating to the WCS.
Now back to enjoying the baby animals. Vote for which new zoo animal you think deserves the totally made-up accolade of Cutest in Show.