« Success | Main | (Eu)social death »

August 07, 2004

Sad but true

I have noticed lately in my referrer log that a lot of people are coming by here to look into buying naked mole rats to have as pets or tiny hairless mammalian servants or whatever.

I agree that they would be really fun to have as pets. They're lively and cute in a sick, wrinkly sort of way, and having one would make you the coolest kid on the block, no contest. That badass girl with the boa constrictor who thinks she's sooo exotic and bizarre would shit if you started going around with a naked mole rat in your front pocket.

But I've learned that the sad truth is that it's really not feasible to keep them, unless you have room for about 800 of them. If you separate them from their colony, they die. They're that dependent on each other.

Naked mole rats are eusocial. Their social structure is akin to bees or ants in that they have a queen, a few lucky inseminator males, and a handful of soldiers to protect the breeders. The rest are nonreproductive worker drones.

Anyhow, you should go learn more about them because they're pretty interesting little creatures.

If you really want to watch them in your own home, you can keep the National Zoo's naked mole rat cam up on your computer.

Ok, that's all on the naked mole rat front for now. We're still waiting for the rubber naked mole rat shipment to hit Rochester.

August 7, 2004 | Permalink