May 16: National Sea Monkey Day

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National Sea Monkey Day

Sea Monkey Day is coming up on May 16th! Sea Monkeys are a type of brine shrimp that were first sold in 1958 by Harold von Braunhut, who marketed them as pets.

They became one of the world’s most popular pet items before being discontinued in 1976. In 2006, they made a comeback when Toys “R” Us introduced them to their stores. Sea monkeys have also been featured in cartoons and movies such as The Simpsons and Gremlins 2: The New Batch.”

History of National Sea Monkey Day

Sea Monkeys were created back in 1957 by Sir Harold Von Braunhut.  Sir Harold collaborated with some of the marine biologists to eventually invent the appropriate mix of chemicals and nutrients in dry form which could be added to plain tap water, creating a good habitat where these tiny creatures could comfortably thrive.

Obviously, they are not monkeys, but actually brine shrimp, and Sea Monkeys are not actually a species of their own but rather the common name for Artemia NYOS. 

They were originally called ‘instant life’ because you just added tap water to a packet of dust and watched them hatch and grow. But after some fans remarked about their monkey-like tails, Sir Harold changed their names to  Sea Monkeys.

Sea Monkey Kits were sold through comic books (apparently he bought over 3.2 million pages of advertising!) and are still a huge part of childhood culture.

Did you have one?

How to celebrate national sea monkey day

Many of us have heard or even taken part in celebrating this national day.  In essence, individuals celebrate this day in different ways such as:

  • Buy a kit to hatch and share their life’s journey on social media.
  • Use this day as a good opportunity for educating children on the significance of caring for pets.
  • Use this day to create awareness of how important our marine life is to the wellbeing of the planet.

Fun Facts about National Sea Monkey Day

  • Sea monkey habitats only need filtered tap water to survive.
  • They are born with three active eyes and breathe using their feet.
  • When these creatures want more oxygen, they swim upside down ( good job they breathe through their feet!)
  • They are born as dots and quickly grow to an inch.
  • They are incredibly sensitive to light, so they typically live in underwater caves and dark places.
  • These little crustaceans have made their appearances on television shows including Spin City, Roseanne, Night Court, South Park, The Simpsons, It’s Garry Shandling’s Show, and Desperate Housewives. 
  • Sea Monkeys also went into space on October 29, 1998 when astronaut John Glenn carried them aboard Space Shuttle Discovery. After spending nine days in space, researchers hatched eight weeks later to find that the eggs didn’t seem to be adversely affected by traveling.

If you’re like me and have memorable and happy moments after receiving your very first sea Monkeys and want to relive some of that joy then use this day to buy a new kit.

Important Information

National Sea Monkey Day

Celebrating these tiny creatures of the deep


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