sea monkey and aqua dragon comparison

Sea Monkeys vs. Aqua Dragons – Comparison

As a kid, I saw a Sea Monkey ad in the bank of a magazine and eagerly waited for my kit to come in the mail. As far as pets go, Sea Monkeys were easy to care for, fun to watch, and didn’t take up a lot of space. Now, you can order your sea monkeys online or purchase them in stores, but sea monkeys aren’t the only little swimming creature for sale.

Are Aqua Dragons the new’ sea monkey,’ or are they something else entirely? What’s the difference between sea monkeys and Aqua Dragons, and which one is better?

In this article, we’ll compare Sea Monkeys and Aqua Dragons. We’ll talk about what they actually are, how similar they are, and what’s different about them. We’ll also go over the pros and cons of each. But first, let’s look at what a Sea Monkey actually is.

What Is a Sea Monkey?

Sea Monkeys are a hybrid brine shrimp known as Artemia nyos. They were bred for the purpose of being pets, so they are hardier and live longer than standard brine shrimp. They’ll grow up to ½ to 1 inch long and, under ideal conditions, could live up to a year!

If you purchase a standard sea monkey kit, you’ll receive everything you need to raise them: a tiny aquarium, water conditioner, sea monkey eggs, and sea monkey food. All you need to do is add water, then add the conditioner. When the water is ready, stir in your sea monkey eggs, and they’ll begin to hatch.

Since your sea monkeys hatch into both males and females, you’ll get to watch them lay eggs and grow babies. A healthy sea monkey colony could live 3 to 5 years under the right conditions.

What Are AquaDragons?

AquaDragons are also a hybrid of brine shrimp from the crustacean family. They have a similar appearance to sea monkeys with their curly tail and’ wings’. AquaDragon eggs can be kept in cryptobiosis, which means the eggs can last dried out, only to hatch up to 20 years later.

An AquaDragon kit comes with a tank, eggs, food, and accessories. AquaDragons may take 48 hours to hatch.

Key Differences Between AquaDragons and Sea Monkeys

Although Sea Monkeys and AquaDragons are both forms of brine shrimp, there are a few differences.

First, Sea Monkeys can live up to a year, while AquaDragons typically only live for six months. Conditions such as water that is too hot or too cold, overfeeding or underfeeding, or water problems can affect the life spans of both AquaDragons and Sea Monkeys.

While both SeaMonkey and AquaDragon eggs can be kept in cryptobiosis, it seems that Sea Monkey eggs appear to hatch instantly, while AquaDragon eggs can take up to 48 hours.

How Are Sea Monkeys and Aqua Dragons Similar?

Sea Monkeys and AquaDragons are very similar. You can purchase either kit in stores or online, so they are very easy to find.

Both Sea Monkeys and AquaDragons eat dried algae. However, the ingredients in their respective kits might be a slightly different formula, specifically created to go with each form of brine shrimp.

They are similar in size, with Sea Monkeys growing between a half in and an inch long and AquaDragons averaging about ¾ of an inch in length.

Both types of brine shrimp will mate and reproduce in your tank under the right conditions.

And, of course, they are similar species, too, being hybrids of brine shrimp or teeny little crustaceans.

Are Both Sea Monkeys And Aqua Dragons Easy To Take Care Of?

AquaDragons and Sea Monkeys are very easy pets to raise. You don’t need to walk them, give them a bath, or even take them to the vet for a checkup. They both come with almost everything you need to get started – a tank, food, and eggs. Then, all you need to add is water!

Both Sea Monkeys and AquaDragons need fed about every five days. If you have a lot of AquaDragons, you may want to feed them more often, but overfeeding can kill both types of brine shrimp.

Sea Monkeys VS. AquaDragons

Sea MonkeysAquaDragons
SizeOne half to one inch long20 mm
Life spanUp to a yearUp to 6 months
Food SourceAlgae (from Sea Monkey Kit)Algae (from Aqua Dragon Kit)
Feeding FrequencyEvery 5 daysEvery 2 to 5 days
Scientific NameArtemia nyosArtemia Salinas


Interesting Facts About Both Sea Monkeys and AquaDragons

You can regenerate your Sea Monkey or AquaDragon tank

With both Sea Monkeys and AquaDragons, if all of your pets should happen to die, you can let the tanks completely evaporate and dry it. Then add fresh water and watch new life appear! This occurs because any unhatched eggs will dry out and then be ready to hatch when water is available again.

Sea Monkeys and AquaDragons live in salty water.

Both types of brine shrimp live in brine or salty water. Don’t worry about creating this on your own, though. Both pets come with a water conditioner that makes the water just the right level of brine for your pets to thrive.

Males have whiskers.

In both species, the males have whiskers, but the females don’t. The females have a rounded belly that is actually their egg sack, which the males don’t have.

Sea monkey and AquaDragon eggs can be freeze-dried.

Isn’t it amazing that these eggs can be dried out, packaged, shipped, and then hatched?

Pros and Cons of Raising Sea Monkeys and Brine Shrimp

There are pros and cons to raising both of these mini crustaceans. Check this out to see if these tiny pets are right for you.

Pros of Raising Sea Monkeys

  • Sea Monkeys come in a complete kit with an aquarium, water conditioner, eggs, and food.
  • Sea Monkeys don’t require much attention or care.
  • They can live for up to a year.
  • They reproduce easily.
  • Colonies can live for several years.
  • Sea Monkeys are not dangerous and are technically edible.

Pros of Raising AquaDragons

  • AquaDragons also come in a complete kit with an aquarium, water conditioner, eggs, and food.
  • AquaDragons are just as easy to care for as Sea Monkeys.
  • They’ll reproduce easily when the conditions are right.
  • AquaDragons can’t bite because they don’t have a mouth.
  • AquaDragons may be more robust than Sea Monkeys (see the video below).

Cons of Raising Sea Monkeys

  •  You can’t snuggle with a Sea Monkey.
  • You need to keep the aquarium where it won’t get direct sunlight.

Cons of Raising AquaDragons

  • They typically don’t live quite as long as sea monkeys do.
  • It can be challenging to get the tank conditions just right.

What’s the Verdict: AquaDragons Or Sea Monkeys?

Both Sea Monkeys and AquaDragons are hybrid, consumerized forms of brine shrimp that are marketed as pets. And aside from being slightly different species, they both make great easy-to-care-for pets or fun and simple science experiments.

The best way to choose is to pick the kit that you find exciting! Whether it’s a Sea Monkey on the moon or the AquaDragon Eggspress kit, there’s sure to be a style for you. Just set it up and enjoy watching your new pets grow, eat, swim, and reproduce.

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Sea Monkeys vs. Brine Shrimp – What’s The Difference?