Underwater monitoring

What is population monitoring?

In order to protect seahorses, we need to know where wild populations are, what threats they face, and whether they are growing or shrinking. We do this by tracking population trends over time.

Who can help?

You can! Anyone who sees a seahorse in the wild. You don’t need to be a scuba diver or a scientist to become a population monitor. It is possible to find and count seahorses while snorkelling or walking along the shore at low tide as well.

How do I get involved?

  1. Get in touch. Tell us a little bit about yourself — where you’re based, your scientific background (if you have one), where and how often you’d like to do seahorse monitoring. Feel free to ask questions, too.
  2. Download the iSeahorse Population Monitoring Toolkit (also available in Thai) and check out our how-to video guide. The toolkit has everything you need to get started, including important technical information about choosing a survey site, surveying seahorse populations, identifying individual species, measuring for survey “effort,” and recording your data.
  3. Check out our online training course. It's a fun, free, and full of important information about seahorse population monitoring.
  4. Describe where you'll be doing the monitoring in the Underwater Site datasheet. These videos show you how to choose a survey site and how to record survey site information.
  5. While you're diving, record your data in the Underwater Survey Datasheet. This video shows you how to gather information about seahorses.
  6. Submit your site and survey data to iSeahorse via this spreadsheet. Send to iseahorse@projectseahorse.org.

IMPORTANT: To ensure data accuracy, please make sure to read through all of the toolkit components before you start any seahorse surveys. Also note that the toolkit and supporting material are updated and expanded on a regular basis, so please check back for new versions, and contact us with any suggestions for improvement. We want to hear from you!