May 16 - Geezer's Blog - National Sea Monkey Day and Love A Tree Day

The Bottom Line: Fun facts about sea monkeys!

The Full Story:

  • Sea-Monkeys are hybrid brine shrimp, and the brainchild of the mail-order entrepreneur Harold von Braunhut in 1957.
  • How the heck do they live? These shrimp live in salt lakes or salt flats, and when the water of a salt lake evaporates, the shrimp go into this state of suspended animation. While in this state – also known as cryptobiosis – the animals are in a protective cyst-like casing, until water is added.
  • While they do NOT look like the cutesy comic people in the ads, sea-monkeys have three eyes and breathe through their feet!
  • Sea-Monkeys are born with one eye, and pop out two more upon reaching maturity.
  • They can reproduce sexually or asexually.
  • They chase flashlight beams.
  • They can grow up to two-inches long.
  • There’s a good reason they were first advertised in comic books. Despite the success of Uncle Milton’s ant farms, chain stores wouldn’t touch these little creatures, in part because of Wham-O’s disastrous Instant Fish toy. So in 1962, he started buying advertising space in comic books, writing the copy – which promised “a BOWLFULL OF HAPPINESS” – himself. He didn’t go for a type or genre of comic books. These were marketed directly to kids. And that strategy was successful.” All people had to do was send the money to the address in the ad, and their Sea-Monkeys would arrive in the mail.
  • The holiday’s creator, Susan Barclay, had a totally understandable inspiration for creating this ‘special day!’ Her fascination with Sea-Monkeys is rooted in a minor childhood frustration: her mother wouldn't let her send away for the pets. She bought her first pack at the age of 21, and has been obsessed ever since.

The Bottom Line: Quick facts about trees!

The Full Story:

  • Well-maintained trees and shrubs can increase property value by up to 14%.
  • Trees properly placed around buildings can reduce air conditioning needs by 30%
  • The shade and wind buffering provided by trees reduces annual heating and cooling costs by 2.1-billion dollars.
  • Each average-sized tree provides an estimated $7 savings in annual environmental benefits, including energy conservation and reduced pollution.
  • Water originating in our national forests provide drinking water for over 3400 communities, and approximately 60-million individuals.
  • One tree can absorb as much carbon in a year as a car produces while driving 26,000 miles.
  • Over the course its life, a single tree can absorb one ton of carbon dioxide.
  • An average American uses about 750 pounds of paper every year, and 95% of homes are built using wood. That means each person uses the equivalent of one 100 foot-tall, 16-inch diameter, tree every year for their paper and wood product needs.
  • About one third of the United States of America is covered by forests.
  • According to the last forest inventory, there are almost 247-billion trees over 1-inch in diameter in the U.S.
  • The average tree in an urban/city area has a life expectancy of only 8 years.
  • The tallest tree in the country is a Coast Redwood growing in northern California's Redwood National Park. It is 369 feet tall and over 2000 years old!

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