Tyner got something really ugly for Christmas from GG.
They are called Aquasaurs. They are kind of like the Sea Monkeys of old, where you put the eggs in the water and wait for them to hatch.
We had two survive from a batch of 25 eggs. This is normal, I guess. One grew pretty fast, and one stayed really tiny.
A few days ago the tiny one disappeared, so we fear he may have become a midnight snack.
The Big One just keeps growing though. According to the booklet you get with the set, "an Aquasaur's skeleton is outside of it's body, not inside like a mammal's." For this reason, "an Aquasaur sheds its skeleton (molts) several times as it grows."
Last night, Jason was cleaning out the "tank" (which is really just a flimsy plastic bowl with a lid). After he filled it up with spring water (no chlorinated tap water for these guys), he seemed a little worried. He thought The Big One might be dying. It was flopping around, bending it's body back and forth, flailing around the tank. Well, then he looked closer and realized it was molting. I grabbed Tyner real quick and lifted him up so he could see. Then Jay had to lift the skeleton out with a stir-stick so Tyner could look at it closer. It was pretty cool to watch.
An Aquasaur also has "35 to 70 pairs of legs that it uses for swimming and bringing food to its mouth." Tyner and I got to watch The Big One eat one day, and it was really cool to watch his legs waving back and forth, holding the little food pellet to its mouth.
All in all, this has been a pretty fun present, one the whole family has enjoyed. It has been slightly expensive, what with having to buy spring water. But we will probably do it again with the half batch of eggs we still have.
Here is a picture of The Big One so you can see how ugly he is: