Fauna: The Adorable Microscopic Organisms That Can Survive in Space

More

Tardigrades are minuscule, eight-legged creatures that can withstand extreme conditions, including the vacuum of space. They kind of look like fat little caterpillar-bear hybrids, earning them the name "water bears." Motherboard interviewed Mike Shaw, a naturalist, about the mysterious creatures for their Spaced Out series. Because they are so unlike other species on Earth, one theory holds that they evolved elsewhere and somehow traveled here on "space debris." For more on the science and a pretty impressive animated GIF of a dancing polar bear, visit Motherboard

For more videos from our "Friday Fauna" series, visit the Atlantic Video channel. While we continue to ponder the possibility of life beyond our planet, Megan Garber's "Swabbing and Hoping: How NASA Keeps Germs From Colonizing Mars" explores the very real issue of making sure Earthlings (of any species) don't contaminate the rest of the universe. 

Jump to comments

Kasia Cieplak-Mayr von Baldegg is the executive producer for video at The AtlanticMore

Cieplak-Mayr von Baldegg joined The Atlantic in 2011 to launch its video channel and, in 2013, create its in-house video production department. She leads the development and production of original documentaries, interviews, and other video content for The Atlantic. Previously, she worked as a producer at Al Gore’s Current TV and as a content strategist and documentary producer in San Francisco. She studied filmmaking and digital media at Harvard University.
Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

Where the Wildest Things Are

A government facility outside of Denver houses more than a million products of the illegal wildlife trade, from tigers and bears to bald eagles.


Elsewhere on the web

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Where the Wild Things Go

A government facility outside of Denver houses more than a million products of the illegal wildlife trade, from tigers and bears to bald eagles.

Video

Adults Need Playtime Too

When was the last time you played your favorite childhood game?

Video

Is Wine Healthy?

James Hamblin prepares to impress his date with knowledge about the health benefits of wine.

Video

The World's Largest Balloon Festival

Nine days, more than 700 balloons, and a whole lot of hot air

Writers

Up
Down

More in Video

Just In