Holy shit, you guys. I’m sorry. I’ve been trying to curse a little less here these days, but be warned, this post is going to be motherfucking full of motherfucking cursing because you are not going to believe what has fucking transpired in Stimeyland this evening.
So, as happens every night in Stimeyland, I fed my gerbils and petted them a little and then I put their tank lid back on their tank and then my mind took a minute to try to figure out what exactly I was seeing in said tank.
It looked like fingers were sticking up out of the bedding and wiggling. At first I was all, “WHO PUT THE LIVE SEVERED HUMAN HAND IN THE TANK?!” then I realized that there was no way a live severed human hand was underneath the gerbil bedding, so then my mind was all, “HOW DID THOSE GIANT, HORRIBLE, FAT WORMS GET INTO THE TANK?!” and then I realized that they were not worms.
They were this:
MY GERBILS—MY TWO BOY GERBILS—HAD A WHOLE MOTHERFUCKING SLEW OF BABIES!
I screamed for a while and then took some photos and then I screamed some more and I was all, “ALEX, WHAT DO I DOOOOOOOO???????” and we were both like, “The internet will know!”
And to the friends of Stimeyland, who were all “Put a hat on them!” and “Can Algernon help?” YOU ARE NOT HELPING!!!!
But seriously, read the thread. My friends are the funniest people in the whole world and are the only thing that kept me from running into the street screaming about tiny gerbils.
You have questions. I do not have answers.
This website that several people sent me the link to has answers. Just skip right past the “Making the decision to breed” section. Also, the gerbil book I have, in addition to having a chapter on gerbil photography, has a chapter on gerbil babies. I will be rereading that tonight.
Nonetheless, I will try to answer some of your Burning Questions:
Will the dad eat the babies?
Evidently hamster dads are dicks. Rumor has it that a lot of people I know have been traumatized by hamster dads eating their babies. The information I have found is that gerbil dads are awesome, thus proving the superiority of gerbils over hamsters, and eliminating the need to remove him from the tank immediately. Apparently, there are situations when a baby gerbil will be eaten, but it is not a given.
Also, 85 of you will leave comments telling me about the gerbil you had that ate the other gerbil you had. Now YOU are freaking me out.
Is it possible that one of those male gerbils is, in fact, female?
Fuck you. Shut up.
Do you know which one is the dad?
Not really. I still don’t know which is the girl, but it is my instinct that Mouse is the mom and Jetpack is the dad. I figure I will know for sure once I see one of them nursing the babies. That’s a pretty good indicator.
Do you think one of them was pregnant when you got them?
No! I have had these gerbils since NOVEMBER! They have been living together for months with no babies. In fact, I specifically checked their gestation period so I could take a deep sigh of relief once it passed. Then a couple weeks after that I took another deep sigh of relief because it meant that I probably didn’t have a boy/girl pair that was going to mate.
How many babies are there?
I don’t have the answer to that. More than three? Probably less than eight? I’m guessing five. Alls I know is that suddenly there were little pink bodies all over like there was a baby gerbil explosion and then Mouse and Jetpack were carrying them back into their little house and some of them were lying on their backs with their little feet waving in the air, just like turtles, and it seemed like they were EVERYWHERE, but I wasn’t smart enough to actually, you know, count them. Now they’re in their little house and I can’t see them.
In the nightmare I have tonight, I’m sure there will be 85 of them.
Will you keep them?
I don’t know. I guess that depends on how many there are and how many survive. I have to separate Mouse and Jetpack now, so having additional gerbils, also DEAR GOD PLEASE CORRECTLY IDENTIFIED BY GENDER, to keep them company might be nice. Also baby gerbils (once they grow fur) will be super cute, right?
However, according to some information I’ve found, it sounds like gerbils mate again immediately after birth, so Mouse may already be pregnant again. I’m not sure how many gerbils I can handle.
Are you going to end up with 80 gerbils?
What are you doing first thing tomorrow morning?
Going to PetSmart to buy a boy gerbil tank.
Are you freaking out?
I AM FREAKING OUT!!!!!