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.

Good lord.

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:




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!”

So I panicked on Facebook and you all created the most hilarious Facebook thread in the history of Facebook threads.

Screen Shot 2013-03-13 at 11.27.24 PM

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.

Stupid me.

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.

This gerbil is turtled.

This gerbil is turtled.

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?


46 thoughts on “I AM FREAKING OUT

  1. so wait…to recap, how do the boy gerbils feed the babies? THAT’S NOT MILK!!!

    Oh wait…one of them is a girl. I’m almost positive. Where was I during this? Because I had stuff to say.

  2. I had pet rats as a kid. If any of the rats excaped we would have between 8 & 16 babies in a matter of weeks. Three.. you’re lucky! We had two cages of boys and one of girls.

  3. So are we sure they are even gerbils? Everything I thought I ever knew about breeding has been turned on its head.
    The only thing I know for sure? The Pope would not approve of two boys having babies.

  4. Wait…you didn’t answer my question. Will you be at the New England Gerbil show? They have agility contests and everything. Booking Mouse and Jetpack separate rooms right now.

  5. Ah, the miracle of life! Congratulations on this beatiful stage! Here’s to many more!

  6. My first instinct, as irreverent as it may be, was to say something about two “dudes” having babies on the SAME day as the new “conservative” pope was elected is some sort of sign from God…but, I got distracted by all of the hilarity that ensued on Facebook…as well as the fact that they eat their young. Good luck! You can now add “gerbil breeder” to your resume!

  7. Most fucking hilarious thing I have ever read in my entire life. And facebook thread was even more hilarious.

    Love you, Gerbil Girl.
    xo ;0)

    • Those posts are great! And made me feel a little better in the knowledge that they will, in fact, become cute.

  8. Congratulations on the new babies! Probably would be a good idea at this point to get a really good picture of gerbil genitalia and learn how to tell which are male and which are females so you NEVER have to trust the pet store guy again. The bastard! :)

  9. I’m sorry, but I LMAO at the facebook thread. Hope everyone stays healthy and alive and this is your last litter. Holy cow!

  10. ha ha ha ha ha.

    the same thing happened to my younger siblings when i was in college. i wish i had the letter my mother wrote me after someone left the lid off and there were GERBILS ALL OVER THE HOUSE.

  11. You guys are all so amazing. Every comment I read, I think that the next one couldn’t possibly be funnier, but then it is. You guys are all kind of assholes for laughing at me, but I love you anyway.

  12. You may think me over-involved, stalkerish and weird, but one of my first thoughts this morning was “I wonder how Stimey’s baby gerbils are doing!” and then, “I wonder how Stimey is coping…” It was just like you were a new mom in the hospital. Except I don’t knit, so I cannot make you little hats for your 85 gerbils.

    [BTW you are making me love rodents, and my entire life? I don’t do rodents. Think back — in the five years we have gone to blogging stuff together, have I ever been photographed with Algernon? See??]

  13. This was the best start to a Thursday I’ve ever had.

    (BTW When my brothers and I were little my parents bought us one mouse. Six weeks later we had 28…honestly)

  14. Yes the dad will eat the babies. I had the same thing happen to me over and over again. One day lovely babies next minute all gone. The mummy is the one with the extra tummy. Good luck. But don’t take them to the pet shop as snake owners buy them and mice and rats to feed live to their snakes.

  15. Jetpack and Mouse are probably Quiverfull, just like the Duggars. You need to give the babies names that start with the letter J, dress the females in modest skirts and blouses and set them to raising the subsequent crops of young’uns. Don’t segregate the genders! God’s plan is for them to be fruitful and multiply until the entire Earth’s surface is one giant mass of writhing, copulating gerbils. It says so in the Bible.

  16. sweet jebus, this just makes me laugh and laugh…mainly because I am a big nut for my chickens and my husband has about killed me…and I don’t have the heart to tell him that out of the 18 rooster we got to butcher, that I want to keep the biggest baddest (ok, really, the nicest?) mofo because I want to pair one up with miss broody. What’s cuter than baby chicks? Baby chicks being born of course!!!! :D So…if your husband gets all snooty about keeping 5000 gerbils just send him to my FB photos and say “SEE!!! It COULD be worse!”

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  18. I just read your blog about the baby gerbils and have been in hysterics. The same thing happened to me many years ago as a teenager. I never had the nerve to get a pair of gerbils as those books terrified me with all the tales of what could go wrong. Then one day it happened when I wasn’t expecting it. From then on I was hooked on breeding gerbils and found all the horrible things the books warned about didn’t happen. Gerbil breeding became my hobby until about the age of thirty!

    • My youngest kid thinks we should breed gerbils and “get rich.” That’s how it works, right? :)

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