Free Seahorse Training Course offered by Ocean Rider!


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For those of you who may not know, Ocean Rider (the world's premier seahorse farm) in Kona, Hawaii, offers a free seahorse training program to all of our clients and customers.

The seahorse training program is a correspondence course conducted entirely via e-mail; I personally wrote the seahorse training manual and I personally administer the training program on behalf of Ocean Rider, so I can assure you that the training is very comprehensive.

For example, the Ocean Rider Seahorse Training Manual alone consists of several hundred pages of text with more than 250 full-color illustrations, and it explains everything hobbyists need to know in order to keep Ocean Rider seahorses successfully in a home aquarium. Ocean Rider provides a free copy of the seahorse training manual to all first-time buyers and customers to assure that home hobbyists are well prepared to give our ponies the best possible care before they make a purchase. As you go through the 10 lessons in the seahorse training manual, I will provide you with additional guidance and personally address any questions or concerns you may have about the information you are reading in the training course. There is no charge whatsoever for this training.

All we ask in return is that you stick with the highly domesticated Ocean Rider seahorses when you are finally ready to add ponies to your tank or add any new ponies to eat or more. As you know, Mustangs and Sunbursts are the perfect ponies for beginners and experts alike. They are hardy, highly adaptable, easy to feed, and perfectly adapted for aquarium life -- the world's only High-Health seahorses, guaranteed to be free of specific pathogens and parasites. Ocean Rider will ship seahorses directly to your doorstep anywhere in the Continental United States and live delivery is ALWAYS guaranteed!

Anyone in the USA who is interested should contact me at the following e-mail address, and we'll get started right away:

petegiwojna@aol .com

In case you're wondering if the seahorse training course is well-suited for your needs and interests, or if it is worth your time, I should explain that the first few lessons are geared very much towards beginners and cover the basics of marine aquarium keeping in detail in simple language, for the benefit of newbies who may have little or no experience with seahorses or saltwater aquariums. But subsequent lessons cover increasingly advanced material and the information provided becomes more and more complex as you progress through the training. Even the most advanced seahorse keepers and expert breeders will find plenty of useful information and gain new knowledge as they go over the final five lessons and correspond with me regarding their particular seahorse setups.

In short, the seahorse training is a crash course on seahorse keeping consisting of 10 separate lessons covering the following subjects, and is conducted entirely via e-mail. There is no homework and there are no examinations or classes to attend or anything of that nature -- just a lot of good, solid information on seahorses for you to read through and absorb as best you can, at your own speed, working from your computer in the comfort of your own home. The comprehensive seahorse training manual is broken down into 10 lessons covering the following subjects:

Lesson 1: Selecting a Suitable Aquarium & Optimizing It for Seahorses.
Tank dimensions and specifications (why height is important);
Tank location and aquarium stressors;
Setting up a SHOWLR tank to create ideal conditions for seahorses;
filtration options
protein skimmers
UV sterilizers
titanium grounding probe
water circulation
Test kits for monitoring water quality;
Aquascaping the seahorse tank;
artificial hitching posts
Basic aquarium setups for seahorses;
undergravel filters
sponge filters

Lesson 2: Cycling a New Aquarium & Installing the Cleanup Crew.
The nitrogen cycle;
nitrification and denitrification
Step-by-step instructions for cycling a new marine aquarium;
Seahorse-safe sanitation engineers and aquarium janitors;
microhermit crabs
cleaner shrimp
Starter seahorses (hardy, highly domesticated, high-health ponies)

Lesson 3: Reading Assignments (books, articles, and columns devoted to seahorses).

Lesson 4: Water Chemistry, Aquarium Maintenance, & Maintaining Optimum Water Quality.
Basic water quality parameters (acceptable range and optimum levels);
specific gravity
dissolved oxygen
Advanced water chemistry for reef keepers;
Performing partial water changes to maintain good water quality;
Aquarium maintenance schedule;

Lesson 5: Feeding Seahorses.
Frozen Mysis serves as their staple, everyday diet;
brands of frozen Mysis
thawing and preparing frozen Mysis
enriching with Vibrance
Recommended feeding regimen;
how to tell if your seahorse is getting enough to eat
Feeding tips for seahorses;
preparing and serving the frozen Mysis
feeding new arrivals
secretive feeders
morning feedings
setting up a feeding station
training the seahorses to use a feeding tray
artificial feeding stations
natural feeding stations
purchasing a ready-made feeding station
elevating the feeding station
fasting seahorses
target feeding
Mysis relicta from Piscine Energetics
Broadcast feeding or scatter feeding -- just say no!

Lesson 6: Compatible Tankmates for Seahorses.
Safe and unsafe companions -- no guarantees;
Tropical tankmates;
fish to avoid
seahorse-safe fish
seahorse-safe invertebrates
Feeding seahorses in a community tank;
Seahorse-proofing a reef tank
safe corals
unsafe corals
lighting the seahorse reef
managing water circulation for a seahorse reef

Lesson 7: Courtship & Breeding.
Courtship displays in Hippocampus (fully illustrated)
tilting and reciprocal quivering
pouch displays (pumping and ballooning)
copulatory rise and the egg transfer
Pair formation
Morning greetings
Male brooding -- a true pregnancy
Giving birth -- dawn deliveries

Lesson 8: Raising the Young.
Seahorse fry
Determining ease of rearing
Setting up a basic nursery for benthic babies
Advanced nursery tank options for pelagic fry
the shaded nursery
kriesel and pseudokreisel nurseries
the divided nursery
in-tank nurseries (illustrated)
the greenwater "starter" nursery
hyposalinity for pelagic fry
Delivery day
Culling the fry (if necessary)
Feeding the fry
hatching and enriching brine shrimp (Artemia)
decapsulated brine shrimp eggs
culturing rotifers and copepods
Fry feeding schedule

Lesson 9: Disease Prevention and Control.
Captive bred vs. wild-caught seahorses
Importance of High-Health seahorses
Seahorse anatomy illustrations
external anatomy
internal anatomy
Screening seahorses from your LFS
Quarantine tank
Quarantine protocol for pet-shop ponies and wild seahorses
Beta glucan boosts immunity to disease
Early detection of health problems
aquarium stressors
disease symptoms in seahorses
What to do at the first sign of a health problem
The seahorse-keepers medicine chest
first aid kit for seahorses
must-have medications to keep on hand
properties of the main medications
Life expectancy
Hepatic lipidosis (prevalence of fatty liver disease)
Seahorse disease book

Lesson 10: Mustangs and Sunbursts (Hippocampus erectus) & Acclimating New Arrivals.
Nature of Mustangs and Sunbursts
multi-generational approach to rearing
hybrid vigor
genetic diversity
selective breeding
Hippocampus erectus species summary
scientific name and common names
meristic counts and morphometric measurements (illustrated)
climate and distribution
color and pattern
breeding habits
breeding season
gestation period
brood size
pelagic/benthic fry
onset of sexual maturity
ease of rearing
natural habitats and natural history
preferred parameters and aquarium requirements
suggested stocking density
successful rearing protocols
feeding the fry
nursery tank designs
rearing and grow out tanks
diet and nutrition
color variations
temperature requirements
wide ranging species with different races
recommended reading
Acclimating new arrivals (step-by-step instructions)
Keeping and culturing red feeder shrimp (Halocaridina rubra)

Once we begin the lessons, I will be providing you with detailed information on all of the subjects above and answering any questions you may have about the material I present so that everything is perfectly clear to you. I will also be recommending seahorse-related articles for you to read and absorb online. And, of course, once we begin, I will be working with you personally every step of the way through our ongoing correspondence until your new aquarium is ready for seahorses and you are well prepared to give them the best of care, regardless of how long that may take.

Anyone in the Continental United States who would like to participate in the seahorse training course should send a brief message expressing their interest to me at the following e-mail address:

petegiwojna@aol .com

Stay safe and stay healthy, everybody!

Happy Trails!
Pete Giwojna, Ocean Rider Training Program Advisor


Premium Member
i thought i knew everything about seahorse husbandry having maintained and reared horses and fry. i ordered pete's course several years back and i still have it in dropbox to refer to when needed. it is by far the most comprehensive acculumation of information regarding seahorse care you will find anywhere. if you do not take advantage of pete's offer then you are plain nuts.
extremely highly recommended.