A “leaping” frog unintentionally photobombed a NASA rocket launch earlier this month. (Do you see it?) The unsuspecting amphibian is seen saluting the world amid the smoke plume left behind by the departing spacecraft.
Unfortunately, due to the intense heat, the little guy probably didn’t make it past his five minutes of fame and is likely to have burned to death.
No one knows where the frog came from, but, more likely than not, it was probably enjoying the sights and sounds before tragedy struck in the form of the gasoline and heat ignited.
NASA was launching the LADEE Spacecraft, which is tasked with exploring the moon, from Virginia last Friday.
The launchpad at the Wallops/Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport, as all other similar facilities, uses a high pressure sprinkler system that prevents fires and reduces sound wave forces on the spacecraft. The perfect area for the leaping frog to hang out on a hot summer day.
NASA actually put out a statement about the frog who photobombed the launch:
“The photo team confirms the frog is real and was captured in a single frame by one of the remote cameras used to photograph the launch. The condition of the frog, however, is uncertain.”
The elevated temperature required to put the rocket into space was clearly no match for the poor frog.
If you are wondering how many other innocent animals have been caught in the heat of the flames created by a space launch, let’s just say the leaping frog is not the first one.
Just this week, footage emerged of a herd of cows that were scared off by the launch of the SpaceX Grasshopper.
In 2009, a bat, who was nicknamed “Space Bat,” was seen hanging precariously from the external tank of the Space Shuttle Discovery.
What will the photobomb frog be known as?