Critter? Profile: Claycy!

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Critter? Profile: Claycy!



Name: Claycy

Species: Unknown!

Primary Caretaker: Terrestrial Team, Robert Dan

Diet: Insects like grasshoppers and crickets

Housed: Wilson's Wildlife Center, Enclosure 72

Creature Features!

A "Claycy" is one of our cute sand clumps that were discovered in Vino, Lazio, Italy (a small town with a relaxed atmosphere inhabited by devout Catholics), a place just as mysterious as Boring, Oregon! …it's OK. We understand that y'all readers don't know what to think about that. You probably are thinking, "But they aren't animals or living beings!", or, "Have even your heads gone strange from all the strange animals you deal with?" We promise that the next paragraph will answer any questions you kids have about their ecology!

Claycies are clumps 100% composed of roughly 700-800 grams of sand. Via an unknown method, they crawl across the ground to move, allowing them to catch prey, play, and come for us. When they move, they lose bits of their volume, but when they swallows their prey, insects, their sand increases by the same amount as the insects' mass. Predation (which I am not sure if it can even be called that) seems to be the only way they can increase the sand in their body, and sand can't be introduced from the outside.

Periodically, they breed. One day, we thought they were just playing with each other as usual, but then one of them shed a little bit of sand and gave it to another, and two hours later, the Claycy that was given the sand had seemingly shed a bunch of sand from itself. That sand was moving, and at that moment, we realized that we had finally witnessed this wonderful moment. Of course, just as life begins, the opposite also happens, and we also discovered clumps of unmoving sand within the enclosure.

When caretakers like Robert Dan and other humans that they know and trust enter their enclosure, all of them form crowds around them. Some bad boys prey on the caretakers, clinging to their boots and making them unable to move. They're always staying in the same place, waiting for food, and when nobody pays attention to them, (sometimes) some of them sleep in the sun. A lot of them (but not all!) get so happy when you rub them as if you are writing a message on a beach, making noises which are just the cutest!



Claycy, the glutton who ate everyone's crickets! (It's hard to tell, but it's in the middle!)

In 2021, the supervisors discovered a large number of Claycies in Vino, Lazio. According to the citizens, they began settling there around the end of 1996. Although the citizens treated them like any other supernatural phenomenon at first, they then realized that they were like adorable animals just like us, and the whole community watched over them. Even after their initial discovery, new ones appear every 3 times a year. The supervisors performed research, and after considering their characteristics, they entrusted the Claycies within our care.

Actually, despite the info provided by citizens about its discovery, the existence of creatures like Claycy has been known since around the 1860s as an urban legend spread around.

Special Needs and Accommodations!

The current environment of their enclosure is designed to be as close as possible to their original location. Because Boring is cooler than Italy, in the wintertime, they have to be moved to an indoor enclosure. In cold weather, their movements slow down. According to the supervisors, they are somewhat heat resistant.

Claycies LOVE to bask in the sun! During the day, they find places under the sun comforting. However, Claycies hate water! When it rains, they need to quickly make a place to hide in.

To tell the truth, we don't actually know much about them. Well, other than the fact that they are quite lovable friends, we don't know much beyond that. The Terrestrial Team needs to bring their ecology to light.

Wilson's Wildlife Solutions' policy about Claycy!

Hi, Tim Wilson (the founder of Wilson's Wildlife Solutions) will be taking over to talk about the Claycies. Now that you've read this far, you'll probably think that we are rather strange to be protecting something that isn't really an animal. So, why did the supervisors entrust the Claycies to us?

Since a Claycy lacks many biological features, you are wondering how it is considered an animal given its ecology, right? Well, we humans and other animals live in the same way, eating, sleeping, waking up, laughing, being sad, repeating every day, and then finally dying. If you think that Claycies aren't that different after all, then you'll have reached the same conclusion as us. We already spend time with such neighbours, and thus, the supervisors thought it would be efficient to entrust them with us! Isn't that proud?

Still, as for people who don't understand that, Robert and the other caretakers will guide you through the process of truly understanding the Claycies. Let's promise to fix our prejudices!

-Tim Wilson

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