Thursday, August 5, 2010

Animals In Space

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China, France, Iran, Japan, Russia (previously the USSR), and the United States have all launched animals beyond Earth's atmosphere, initially to answer the crucial question: is it possible to survive in space?

In launch manifests, these are generally referred to as "biological packages." Most people know about and have seen photographs of the famous dogs and chimpanzees who have flown, but most people might be surprised at the entire list.

Up into the modern day, many animals have been part of craft payload, to study the effects of micro-gravity on their biological processes. Here are all the members of the Kingdom Animalia who have left Earth and traveled into space:

Space Animals

Bacteria
Tardigrades (Water Bears)
Meal Worms
Nematodes (Round Worms)
Silk Worms
Harvester Ants
Fruit flies
Wine flies
Wasps
Beetles
Crickets
Cockroaches
Butterflies
Spiders
Scorpions
Snails
Sea Urchins
Brine Shrimp
Jellyfish
Mummichogs (killifish)
Danios (zebra fish)
Oyster Toadfish
Carp
Swordtail Fish
Frogs
Newts
Turtles
Tortoises
Mice
Rats
Hamsters
Guinea Pigs
Cats
Dogs
Cynomolgus Monkeys
Squirrel Monkeys
Macaques (Rhesus Monkeys)
Chimpanzees
Humans

Space Animals

Aside from the living creatures, many different kinds of ova have also been flown, in order to study developmental effects: frog eggs, stick insect eggs, chicken embryos, quail eggs, gypsy moth eggs and butterfly larvae.

Overall launch records show activity, but no biological packages thus far, from the space agencies of Australia, Brazil, India, Indonesia, Israel, New Zealand, North Korea, Norway, Pakistan, Romania, South Africa, South Korea, Sweden, Syria, Taiwan and the United Kingdom.

4 comments:

Mrs. L said...

I bet those cockroaches are still living somewhere....

Jeremy said...

Haha, no joking there. But notice how the PETA peeople aren't worried about them. Seems like you have to be cute and furry to merit their protection.

Jake said...

Sorry, I try not to be 'that guy' who wanders from blog to blog leaving rim-shot one-liners, especially with as novel a series of posts as you are doing on animals. Sincerely, I love that you are exploring this byway of space exploration.

Still, I'm trying to get my mind around what a zero-g litter box looks like. Could you research that? Because right now I have this image stuck in my head of my sister's cat going crazy in a dusty cloud of his own...Oh, and I totally got dibs on starting a band called "Floating Tortoise."

PillowNaut said...

o please, be 'that guy'. I'm fine with it, LOL... and the opening paragraph in the post after this one was researched JUST for you. It's mouse-litter explanation instead of kitty-litter, but I figured that was close enough ;)

As for a band, I was thinking more along the lines of Microgravity Mummichog. Too nerdy?