As tropical waters are their native habitat, seahorses require stable tank temperatures ranging from 75 degrees Fahrenheit to 86 degrees Fahrenheit to maintain good health. They love to wrap their tails around structures and need a thin rope, vegetation, branches or coral for attachment. Wild seahorses prefer to feed on live shrimp and fish and often die of starvation in captivity if live food is not provided.
Seahorses do not have a true stomach and must be fed frequent small amounts rather than a few large feedings. These animals do not do well with other fish and are best kept in tanks with only the same species. Water disturbances can cause gas-bubble disease. This is a disorder in which gas bubbles form in the male's brood pouch or under the skin of the tail. Very high light levels can lead to algae growth on the seahorse's body, which must be removed from the skin with a soft brush while the animal is held under gently running water.
A seahorse can change color to mimic its environment. Darker sea horses generally reside in darker tanks. Adding brightly colored items to the tank encourages the sea horse to take on a brighter hue.