SOUTH WALES (WNCT) — Over 300 aquarium-bred baby seahorses were released into the waters off Port Stephens in New South Wales, as part of a threatened-species recovery project.

This footage, provided by SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium, shows a diver releasing the creatures into their new environment – the first release of its kind in the Port Stephens area.

Having previously released hundreds of baby seahorses into Sydney Harbour, SEA LIFE said one of the aims of this year’s project was to extend their recovery north to Port Stephens.

Laura Simmons, SEA LIFE regional curator for Australia and New Zealand, said, “This is a huge step in our seahorse recovery program. We’re excited to take the successes we’ve demonstrated in Sydney Harbour up to Port Stephens where populations have seen the most devastating declines.”

In February, a total of 30 so-called “seahorse hotels” were deployed to Port Stephens, allowing enough time for sponges, algae and seahorse prey, such as small shrimps, to start using the structures, making them perfect locations for seahorses to call home.

According to the aquarium, the “White’s seahorse, also known as the Sydney seahorse, is Australia’s only threatened seahorse species with populations declining due to habitat loss and degradation.”

Credit: SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium via Storyful