So you wan to learn about crustaceans. Perfect. You’ve come to the right place. Shrimp, lobster, crab, krill, barnacle, we’ve got ‘em all. The first instance in which I became really interested in crustaceans as a taxon was in a pet shop, when my boyfriend and I were browsing the store looking for fish. And we did see some beautiful fish, from betas to guppies, to those little blue and red neons. But what really caught my attention were the tiny little shrimp that inhabited some of the tanks. I learned later that the red ones I was seeing (the ones we ended up getting) were called red cherry shrimp. I was fascinated by them. I loved the way that they swam around, ate, cleaned themselves, crawled around on the rocks and leaves, and looked like they each had their own little personalities. I was overall just completely delighted by the tiny creatures.
We weren’t in the pet shop that day to buy any living things (as we had to set up the tank and filter the water through for about a week first, to make it safe for any future inhabitants), but in the days after our trip to the pet shop, I became more and more convinced that though the fish we saw were very pretty, I had become rather partial to the idea of having pet shrimp. This had never occurred to me before. I had a snail once, but had never really considered becoming someone who had a tank full of little crustaceans.
I soon did, however, become that person. I was out of town for a few days, and when I came back, my boyfriend had purchased some of the red cherry shrimp. We had three. I named them Jean-Paul Sartre, Robespierre, and Diderot. Shrimp just seem to remind me of French philosophers. Anyway. So we had just three of the little shrimples for a few days, and my boyfriend set up a great tank for them. They seemed very happy in their home. So happy, in fact, that we decided to get them some friends.
So about a week later, we walked (on a bitterly cold day, by the way) to the pet shop to get the shrimp some buddies, and to get our water tested – we are very responsible pet-owners. We ended up picking up seven more shrimp, and, luckily, we had a friend with a car give us a ride home (we would never have walked home with the shrimp; they definitely would have frozen to death). When we got them home, we introduced the new shrimp slowly to the tank, and after a little while, we had ten happy shrimples swimming about happily in their new home. The only downside to this was that I could not longer tell the three already-named shrimp apart from the new ones. Except for Jean-Paul Sarte … I’m pretty sure.
So, anyway, that’s the story of how I became interested in crustaceans, and said interest in crustaceans and their many quirks and intricacies has led me to create this blog for you. So, on behalf of me and my eleven* pet shrimp, enjoy the blog!
*we ended up discovering a shrimp we thought had perished, which was, of course, a lovely surprise