As if their horse heads and curly tails didn't make them weird enough, seahorses are also among the few animals whose males give birth.
Researchers from the University of British Columbia recently caught rare footage of this amazing event taking place in the wild.
In the video, shot in the waters of Australia's New South Wales, a very pregnant father holds fast to sea grass as — first one by one, then in spurts — tiny babies begin to spill out of his pouch.
For most ocean species who practice sexual reproduction, sex looks like one of two things: A male fertilizing a female's eggs while they're still inside her body, or males and females both releasing huge quantities of sperm and eggs into the ocean, hoping most of it will meet.
But seahorses do things differently. A female seahorse will deposit her eggs into a male's pouch, where he fertilizes and incubates them. About three weeks later, he gives birth to somewhere between 100 and 250 babies, who immediately float away.
Before UBC's video, most of our seahorse giving birth footage took place in captivity, but those videos are also pretty cool. In this one, the seahorse puts his entire body into the delivery process, as if recoiling from some huge sneezes.
One possible reason why seahorse birthing duties fall to males is that it lets females save their energy for producing eggs. If each sex has its own egg-related job, they can become a super-efficient baby-making production line.