VietNamNet Bridge – Sea horses have been hunted everywhere in coastal
provinces by people, just because they are considered the panacea for gentlemen.
Sea horses favored by men
The Song Cau town in Phu Yen province is called the “metropolis” of sea horses.
Numerous sea horse shops can be seen on the Highway No. 1A which goes across the
Xuan Thinh, Xuan Canh and Xuan Binh communes. Especially, the shops were always
crowded on pre-Tet days, since people flocked there to buy the “gentlemen’s
A truck was seen stopped in front of Ty Shop in Xuan Thinh commune. The driver
got out of the truck and entered the shop. There were two decanters of liquor
soaked with starfish, seahorse. The driver gave the shop owner VND3 million and
took the two decanters away.
“As a driver, I have been tied to my seat all day long. I heard this is not good
to my sexual capability. Therefore, I have to drink the liquor soaked with sea
horses. It is a kind of panacea for men,” he said.
Le Thi Hang, the owner of Ty Shop, said more and more people have been flocking
there to buy sea horses, which has pushed the prices of the panacea up. In the
past, a couple of fresh sea horses (sea horses can be panacea only if people
have them in couple, while a male or a female sea horse separately would be
useless) was priced at VND200,000 only. Meanwhile, the price has increased to
Similarly, a decanter of liquor with a couple of sea horses, which was sold at
VND1.2 million, now is valued at VND1.5 million.
Hang said that sometimes she could sell 12 liquor decanters and 8 couples of sea
horses a day.
Sea horses get exhausted because of the cupidity of people
Diem Truong of Xuan Binh commune has been well known as the sea horse hunting
Nguyen Xuan Hiep, a young man, happily said to reporters that he found three sea
horses all morning. “This is an encouraging result. Many other people could find
anything though they dived under the water all the day,” Hiep said.
The three sea horses could be sold at VND200,000 to the shop owners, with which,
Hiep would have some more money to buy new clothes for his children to celebrate
The Cu Mong lagoon was once the favorite destination for sea horses to come to
look for ephemera. However, since people have been hunting for sea horses, they
have got nearly exhausted in the area.
“I previously just needed to dive at the 2 meter depth to get a lot of sea
horses. But now I have to dive at six meter depth, but sometimes I could not
find anything,” said Nguyen Chi Hieu, a young man, showing reporters the empty
Since sea horses are getting exhausted, in many cases, people mistakenly bought
fake sea horses. Therefore, people have been advised to spend more money to buy
fresh sea horses in order to avoid fake products.
Meanwhile, the owner of Hai Ban Shop said it’d better not to buy dried sea
horses, even though they are cheaper than fresh ones.
“In many cases, dried sea horses have no nutrition, because their nutrition has
been squeezed after many times of being soaked in liquor already,” he explained.
Also according to him, in general, buyers want couples of sea horses, but they
cannot tell the difference between the female and male sea horses. Therefore,
they have to pay money for two male or two female sea horses.