Whew, here's Azurill all the way to Azumarill. Sorry 'bout the delay, but looking forward to doing the Milotic chain! BTW I spotted a mistake in my own Swellow article (apparently Swellow live for 5 years but Taillow evolve at 10... lol) but that's fixed now.
Azumarill Aqua mariruri
Azumarill are placid, bubbly Pokémon that live in lakes and rivers. Having the appearance of blue mouse-like Pokémon with large ears, Azumarill are usually around 2’ 7” (63 cm) tall, they have a thin tail with springy properties tipped with a bauble, which serves as a float. It spends the majority of its time in the water, its blue-and-white patterned body enabling it to camouflage effectively underwater: from above, the blue back blends in with the water; from below, the white underbelly looks like another patch of sunlight. Its ears gives it incredibly sharp hearing; it can hear a Krabby burrowing for food under 500 feet of raging river. An omnivore, Azumarill will stick to eating fruit or small insects, and will occasionally hunt small prey such as Rattata. If threatened, the Azumarill will roll up its ears and curl up simultaneously before rolling off into the nearest river. Since underwater predators make themselves scarce around one another, Azumarill are safest in the water, their natural environment.
Azumarill are quick to reproduce and lead short, uneventful lives, making them very placid Pokémon. However they can be easily fired up and will shoot sharp jets of water with precision when angered. Azumarill males are noticeably smaller than the females, since the latter need to be able to intimidate adversaries. Females are in heat during the autumn, when the water is deep and it is easier for her to escape from danger whilst mating. She will be pregnant for four months to give birth in spring – another season of high waters. Baby Azumarill are referred to as Marill, and these round, mouse-like Pokémon are highly specialised to live in the water since birth. Their tails are filled with a special oil which allows them to use it as a float; as such, primeval peoples have hunted Marill for the oil to put into buoys. Marill grow quickly and will evolve once they hone their swimming abilities. This process takes a few weeks at most, and to celebrate their evolution the newly-evolved Azumarill will compare tail sizes. The one possessing the biggest bauble will get to be the first to swim in the water, and therefore the first to find a prospective mate.
Only recently have scientists discovered that if two adolescent Marill are bred, the product is a small creature with a tail bauble as big as itself, and having no association with water other than its blue colouring and attacks. They named the baby Azurill. Azurill are an exclusively artificial Pokémon and wild Marill will never breed; therefore one will never encounter Azurill in the wild. Unlike its parents, an Azurill keeps its fat in its tail bauble, will not swim, and only enjoys extremely shallow and warm water. Scientists also discovered that it has a limited learning ability and will cease to learn moves after its twenty-first week. Pokémon Professors suggest that the Azurill’s difference to Marill and Azumarill come from it being artificially bred and that this is nature’s way of preventing Azurill to evolve naturally in the wild.
However, if this Pokémon is nurtured and cared for by a trainer or adoptive Pokémon parent, it will evolve like an ordinary Pokémon. By acquiring experience through following a parent or trainer, the Azurill will hone the natural instincts that it was denied at birth and develop enough skills in order to evolve. However, this is a lengthy process and requires enormous amounts of patience and care. Trainers who manage this feat, however, often proclaim that their Marill are more mature and conscious of the world around them than natural Marill.