On the night of 8th October, my mum and I rescued a stray crayfish walking along the road a few doors down from our house. Yup, you read that right - there was a crayfish walking on the tarmac. It was making its way towards the centre of the road, about to be run over by several cars that were heading in its direction. My brother was the one who alerted us to it by telling my mum: "... there's a prawn walking along the road...", but he then promptly left us to deal with it!
We trotted down the road, I took one look at it, and said to my mum: "That's not a prawn - it's a crayfish. And, um, I don't dare to touch it."
I didn't know a thing about crayfish, and I was afraid of all its legs, so I just held up traffic while my mum nudged it towards the side of the road with her foot, then ran back to the house to grab a shoebox and a gardening scoop she uses to water plants. She scooped the crayfish into the shoebox and transferred it to a pail with a bit of water. While I was at work the next day, my mum went around asking our neighbours if anyone had lost a crayfish (either a pet one or a barbecue ingredient), but no one who was in owned up to losing a crustacean.
So it became my baby - despite my fear of its many, many appendages, I did some desperate Googling about crayfish care, transferred it to a large plastic basin (using thick rubber gloves, and trying not to scream while picking it up), gave it mugs to hide in, and bought shrimp pellets for it, and also tried to tempt it with brinjal, peas, raw fish and seaweed. It only seemed to toy with the food and to barely eat, so I was afraid it would starve to death. But I kept putting the food in and hoping it would nibble on something or other, and it seemed fine. Ten days after we found it, my best friend agreed to adopt it. It's now in a tank with plants and rocks and gravel in her home, and it looks more contented. We still have no idea if it's eating, and we don't have a clue where it came from, but we hope it will survive and be happy. If it doesn't, then at the very least, we're giving it a more peaceful and dignified place to die (especially if it was originally meant to be part of someone's hotpot meal).
Yes, I was quite scared of it (it reminded me of a gigantic insect), but I wanted to do whatever I could for it. Now, I actually miss checking on it to make sure it wasn't being attacked by cats or rats, and watching the way it would swiftly reverse-park itself in one mug or another whenever it was startled. Kept me up worrying about it for ten nights, that little critter. And now I don't think I can eat crayfish again for a long, long time...
But anyway, that's the story of one stray cray rehomed!
Note: Although this is not a story about an animal that has been rehomed by the SPCA, we thought it was a great one to share by one determined supporter of the animal welfare cause. Thank you Adele!