We’ve all seen the infamous NASA footage of Neil Armstrong taking his first steps on the moon. Ever wonder if anyone (or anything) else joined him on the trip? NASA makes it a point to never take animals into space unless absolutely necessary, preferring instead to use simulators and computers. However, there have been several cases where non-humans have made the trip to space and valuable data has been collected on how they reacted to a zero-gravity environment. Monkeys, fruit flies, mice, squirrels, and bees are just some of the creatures that have made the trek to the greater beyond.
Some didn’t make the trip back, but others did shockingly well. In the 1984 Challenger mission, NASA sent 3,300 bees to space in a special box. They not only survived, they carried on with their usual routine…almost. The bees created a perfectly normal honey comb, but they didn’t go to the bathroom! Because bees do not excrete inside their hive, the bees held their bladders for a full 7 days. A NASA spokesman described the space hive as “just as clean as a pin.”