The nursery that I've been working at for the last few weeks recently got in some Indian stick insects for the pre-schoolers to admire. Needless to say, not only were the children not bothered, but neither was anyone else. I came in to find them in an unsuitable cage, full of poo, with two of the insects lying dead at the bottom. The cage was bone-dry and the leaves inside were brittle and curled. The trouble is, that none of the plants they will eat (bramble, hawthorn, roses, privet) grow anywhere near the nursery, so feeding them had become a hassle for the staff.
I couldn't stand to leave them there, so I offered to take them home and clean them out. Here's the bad bit, I lied, and told the nursery they had died. But I just couldn't have brought them back.
Since then they have been happily munching fresh, damp leaves, and most have perked up.
The only other drama was when one escaped, and although he was recovered, the shock of the outside world seems to have killed him. This is a big shame, but at least the other three have happy little insect lives ahead of them....