The "big belly seahorse" is called hippocampus abdominalis. If you need a fancy nickname for these things, that's one right there.
The big belly seahorse is one of the largest of all seahorses, growing up to 32 cm in length. Like other seahorses, the head is held at right angles to the body, the eyes can move independently of each other, and the tail is prehensile. Instead of having scales, as most other fish, seahorses have a layer of skin stretched over bony plates that are visible as rings passing around the trunk.
2 March 2005, New York Sun:
The Big Belly has arrived, and it's hungry for New York's litter. The city's first mailbox-size solar-powered trash compactor has been placed in TriBeCa, waiting to squish 350 gallons of litter into two manageable cubes for easy pickup. The unit, lent to the city by the Seahorse Power Co. for testing, arrived 10 days ago.
The inventor of the Big Belly, James Poss, said the units can save the city money on trash pickups, as well as spare the air some of the diesel emissions of garbage trucks, which would need to make fewer stops. Those benefits won't be realized immediately, because, according to a spokeswoman for the Sanitation Department, Taryn Duckett, the collection schedule will not be altered during the test. She could not say how long the testing period would last.
The dark-green unit at Church and Chambers streets was made by Seahorse, a small, privately owned company based in Westborough, Mass., that was founded in April 2003.
The first Big Belly had its debut in February 2004 in Vail, Colo. The devices have since been used in Boston and Orlando, Fla.
27 February 2005, Worcester (MA) Telegram & Gazette, pg. E1:
WESTBORO - The "Big Belly" works with a certain ruthlessness, but that's not a bad thing when it comes to garbage.
Powered by the sun's energy, which is stored in a battery and used to fuel a small motor, the Big Belly trash compactor developed by startup company Seahorse Power Co. can send 1,800 pounds of pressure down on that candy wrapper you just threw away. And that paper cup. Or anything else that drops into one of its bins.