Be free-floating, allowing the situation to surround you, and be in it. Take in the full surroundings, including the temperature of the water.
This may bring incredible clarity, presence and focus. This is what is means to be a jellyfish.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Wish List Wednesday - Week 3

Are you not the fish tank type of person, but still like little creatures to look at? Are you fascinated with organisms and other worlds?  Do you have that difficult someone to buy for on your gift list that has 'everything' and/or wants nothing?  I know several people like this, and Christmas is a particularly difficult time to try to find a gift for these types. 
The Ecosphere enclosed ecosystem
photo courtesy of
Ecosphere Associates, Inc.
A gift that is interesting, intriguing, of living organisms that require virtually no maintenance, that will provided years of awe and wonder is the perfect solution to this gift giving dilemma.  What on earth am I talking about? How about a self-contained ecosystem?
Our Ecosphere - with cleaning magnet

The Ecosphere
Close-up of shrimp,
photo courtesy of
Ecosphere Associates, Inc.
Although of this world, they use space age developments that were initiated by NASA. They are completely contained ecosystems, sef contained and self sustaining, miniature worlds. Inside each one are active micro-organisms, small shrimp, algae and bacteria, all in filtered seawater. There is also a sea fan, decorative shells and lightweight gravel, to provide surface are for the algae to grow. It is a closed ecosystem in which plant and animal life are mutually sustaining.

This ecosystem survives using an outside light source, natural or not, to produce algae. The algae bask in the light and produce oxygen as they grow. The shrimp, a special species found in Pacific waters, breathe the oxygen while nibbling on the algae and the bacteria. The shrimp and bacteria give off the carbon dioxide needed by the algae for photosynthesis and growth. The bacteria decompose shrimp waste, breaking it down into basic chemical nutrients used by the algae.  There is a great visual to show the process on their website.

See 2 of our little shrimp,
with lots of algae
Simply set the Ecosphere in a room with indirect light, natural or not, and watch the magical shrimp swim around nibbling the algae.  It comes with an ingenious cleaning system: magnets. There is a small magnet inside the ecosystem, and one provided with the kit. When the wall of the 'acquarium' looks a little dirty, that is just a film from the micro-organisms inside. Simply rub the magnets along the walls. The inside magnet will stick to the outside one and scrape the walls as you rub.

My husband got one as a gift last year, and our three little shrimp are going strong!  They endured our moves, and have provided many hours of fascination for the kids and hubby, and me! Thier website has testimonials and there was one that struck me. The owners of an Ecosphere had to leave it in their home while they evacuated for Hurricane Ike.  Over three months later, they were able to retrieve their little shrimps, and they all were thriving.  It is estimated they can live up to 10 years, though the company say the average life is 2 to 3 years, though known to exceed 5 years.  Many testimonials say they have had theirs going strong for 8 to 10 years.

Large selection of sizes and shapes available,
photo courtesy of Ecosphere Associates, Inc.
There are various sizes available, even up to exhibition size with their Exhibition Ecospheres.  Ours is the small, 5.25 inch sphere with the small turntable base, and has three shrimp.  Depending on your budget, you have a nice selection of possibilities for purchasing. You can order directly from their website.  Each is shipped via Fedex Overnight directly to you, a signature required for delivery.  It is a fascinating gift, and perfect for those who are so difficult to buy for, and for any age!

Self contained Ecosystem - fun for the whole family
photo courtesy of
Ecosphere Associates, Inc.

1 comment:

  1. So cute! I want one!

    Jessica Qiu


Share you thoughts!