A core memory smacked me in the face while I was wandering through the aisles of Kmart after dinner with some friends recently. Do Sea Monkeys still exist? And should I buy some if they do? I quickly found out that yes, they do. And that’s how I wound up with a tank of Sea Monkeys in 2022 as a [REDACTED]-year old.

Who would have thought that after all these years — and the fact their late creator Harold von Braunhut once allegedly said that Adolf Hitler “just got bad press” — that Sea Monkeys still exist?

Something that surprised me was the fact that not only do Sea Monkeys still exist but the range has expanded. Sure you can buy the little OG cylindrical tank to raise your brine krill babies in, but there are also bigger and cooler options available now.

There are Mars and Magic Castle-themed tanks and a big ol’ Ocean Treasure set that comes with a little analog water pump to “oxygenate the water without electricity”.

Phew, who knew that Sea Monkeys were so much work?

Considering it’s been at least 20 years since I last owned a batch of Sea Monkeys (who possibly died after I forgot to feed them because I was a literal child), I also forgot there’s a bit of prep involved. It’s really not just a case of chucking the lil’ swimmers in with some tap water and waiting for them to appear.

You have to purify the tank water for at least 24 hours before you even think about the Monkeys. So for a full day, I just had an empty tank of water sitting on the bookshelf in my lounge room with nothing in it. I’m sure my housemates were fine with it.

Then it was Monkey time. Hell yeah, that’s what we wanna see. Show me them tiny sprog-lookin’ guys.

After putting the eggs in I had to carefully aerate the water by tipping the whole tank into a jug and back again. I have never focused on a single task so much in my entire life. I was determined to not lose a single unhatched monke.

Five days later and the tiny brine krill babies hatched and started scooting around the tank. They were so small I could barely see them but basically, all those little light-coloured flecks in the tanks are wee babs.

sea monkeys
I promise they’re there!!!

I guess I’m the mum to a bunch of tiny little krill children now. My krilldren. I would do anything for them including not forgetting to feed them their weird-ass green powder food and looking at them doe-eyed as they scoot around their tank with zero thoughts in their tiny dumb brains.

Maybe I’ll treat them to a bigger tank once they’re grown up a bit and can appreciate everything this hard-working mother does for them.

Image: Courtney Fry