The triops came yesterday! Shortly after I returned from lunch, FedEx brought my triops kit. Everyone at the office was very excited and wanted me to get them going right away. Unfortunately, we didn't have any distilled water and there's no place nearby to get some. I was going to wait, but I don't have the attention span for that sort of thing. Instead, I used spring water from the water cooler. If nothing hatches, it's my fault from the get-go.
The triops kit came with a small plastic tank, a packet of eggs mixed with what looks like sawdust, a packet of food pellets, a bag of beach sand and a purple and green plastic castle. In the diagrams, the castle looks small enough to be completely submerged; in reality, it sticks out of the top of the tank in an odd and unattractive manner.
I rinsed the sand as instructed and filled the tank with water after burying the foundations of the plastic castle in the sand. The directions said to put half of the eggs packet into the tank. The sawdust was still floating on top when I left several hours later, but the directions gave no indication of what should be done about that. Stirring made no difference. The water turned murky right away, so I can imagine that viewing the hatchlings is going to be a challenge. Other triops sites warn that frequent water changes are important to keep the tank from getting completely disgusting.
I'll keep you posted on how the triops experiment works out. If it's as bad as everyone's saying, I might reconsider having a beta fish on my desk instead. Either that or I could just do my work and leave the animal husbandry projects at home. But what fun would that be?