Dear Blue Lobster:
What is normal behavior for a baby crayfish? The babies hatched ~1 week ago and now they stopped moving, turned onto their sides and have turned red. Are they alive? Is this normal? What should we do? What do the baby crayfish need to eat?
Dear Gentle Sir:
It is with a heavy heart that I inform you that the state of your baby crayfish (called craybies in scientific circles) indicates that they are, sadly, expired. Moved on to that big freshwater tributary in the sky. Dead.
To directly answer your question, however, typical behavior and appearance of craybies is as follows. For the first week after hatching, they will stay on their mother's underside, and eventually grow bold enough to explore on their own, though always returning to their mother. After another week or so, they will be off on their own, independently foraging for detritus on your tank's bottom.
I wish to express my deepest sympathies and regrets to you, gentle sir, and hope that you can grow beyond this holocaust of dead baby crayfish scattered all over your aquarium and one day attempt to live again without the constant gnawing guilt of a thousand weeping souls.
You, and your silenced children, are in my prayers.