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Seahorse Steed

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Hi-yo, Seabiscuit. Away!

Due to the animal's appearance and name, sometimes seahorses are portrayed as the underwater equivalent of horses, and can be ridden by characters or used as chariot pullers.

This is particularly humorous, since Real Life seahorses are very, very small, the largest not exceeding 8 inches in length, and as slow as a fish can get without being totally immobile. Unlike most fish which move by using their pectoral fins to go slowly or their entire bodies to move quickly, seahorses swim by pushing themselves forward using only their dorsal fins. Since they spend most of their lives among coral or seaweed sucking up tiny crustaceans, they really don't need to be fast or agile.

Sub-Trope of Artistic License – Marine Biology, Horse of a Different Color and Pun-Based Creature. Compare and contrast Our Hippocamps Are Different. See also Seahorses Are Dragons for another creature that seahorses are often compared to.


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  • In The Apotheosis of Washington, Neptune rides two horses while navigating the seas that are just like normal horses, but with fins in the place of their hooves.

    Comic Books 
  • Aquaman sometimes rides a giant seahorse, named Storm (in the Silver Age, anyway). Storm returned a couple of times in the modern age, with writers and artists doing their best to make a giant seahorse Darker and Edgier. In Blackest Night, Black Lantern Aquaman rides a zombified Storm.
  • Disney Ducks Comic Universe: A story where Donald Duck, Scrooge, and Gyro discover an underwater kingdom near one of Scrooge's drilling sites. The seapeople have seahorse racing.
  • In Supergirl story The Death of Luthor, Kara and her Atlanteans friends Jerro and Lori ride three giant seahorses as searching the sea bottom for a rare isotope called "element z".
  • Wonder Woman Vol 1: A few of the merfolk from Ronno's undersea village off the coast of Paradise Island ride giant seahorses sidesaddle.

    Films - Animation 

    Films - Live-Action 
  • Giant seahorses are the steeds of choice for Xebelians (Mera's people) in Aquaman. Atlanteans prefer sharks. Arthur/Aquaman, of course, gets to ride a seahorse in the finale.

  • In The Voyage of the Dawn Treader in the far Eastern Sea Lucy sees a race of merpeople who ride seahorses
  • In the children's book series Mermaid Tales, one of the main characters owns a couple of seahorses for riding.

    Myths & Religion 
  • Classical Mythology: Poseidon was often shown with his chariot pulled by horses or seahorses. However, these were originally different from regular seahorses, with the head of a horse, fins for hooves, and a dolphin tail. Note that Poseidon was the originator of horses (depending on the version, either from when he raped his sister Demeter or when his seed hit some rocks).

    Tabletop Games 

    Video Games 
  • In King's Quest II, Graham does this. They even have saddles. Do the mermaids ride them sidesaddle or something?
  • Naija can ride seahorses in Aquaria for a boost in speed. There is a mini-game and a corresponding achievement for running a race on a seahorse.
  • The city-building game Atlantis Underwater Tycoon has a building, the "Atlantean Castle", that spawns merman knights that ride seahorses to protect your city.
  • The Pokémon Horsea and Skrelp (and their other evolutionary relatives), despite being very small, can be taught the move Surf via TM, which lets them ferry their Trainer around. You don't actually get to see yourself riding them, due to the game using a generic sprite depiction for all surfing Pokemon.
    • Their fully evolved forms are around six feet long/tall and make more plausible steeds.
  • In World of Warcraft:
    • An early quest in the Vashj'ir underwater zone of the Cataclysm expansion allows the character to obtain such a mount, which is the fastest way to move there (and it is only usable there).
    • Also since Cataclysm, a seahorse mount that can be used in all of the other water zones of the game is obtainable, although it's a very, very rare drop.
  • In Kingdom Hearts 3D [Dream Drop Distance], Sora can ride the Tatsu Steed and Tatsu Blaze Dream Eaters if he performs a Link Attack with them. Notable in that they're the flying sort of seahorse, and they also move extremely slowly like actual sea horses. The purpose of the move is to use them as a turret of sorts rather then transportation, though.
  • Kingdom of Loathing's "Under the Sea" quest was updated to include this. After rescuing the Sea Monkees, you can ask about the currents and you end up on a quest to tame a sea horse, granting you access past the currents and into the Merfolk's city as well as increase combat initiative. Hilariously enough, the sea horse side-quest is also one massive reference to My Little Pony as the seahorse's random name generator produces a pony-like name and it's implied to be as colorful as they are.

  • Homestuck: Eridan's lusus is a giant flying seahorse that serves as his steed while he hunts other trolls' lusii, as seen here.

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    Western Animation