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  • (bouncy, rhythmic music)

  • - [Voiceover] This is a Tardigrade.

  • They're tiny animals that grow up to one millimeter long,

  • and have eight legs.

  • They're also known as water bears.

  • Their feet look like this, more like claws.

  • And up close, their faces look like this.

  • Some speculate that there are around 900 known species.

  • They were given the name Tardigrada,

  • by Italian biologist Lazarro Spallanzani.

  • They're also known as moss piglets. (pig grunt)

  • They typically live around water and damp moss

  • or lichens, but can be found almost everywhere on Earth.

  • Some theorize they might have come from space,

  • of course, this is just a theory.

  • They can survive dry periods by curling into little balls.

  • They can hang around like that for 100 years,

  • before casually regenerating.

  • Some species are carnivorous.

  • Some might even eat other Tardigrades.

  • So, how resilient are these little guys?

  • They can withstand 1,000 times the lethal human dose

  • of X-ray radiation.

  • In 2007, some Tardigrades hitched a ride

  • on a space shuttle and lived outside the spacecraft

  • in an oxygen-deprived vacuum of space

  • for 10 days.

  • Many survived.

  • All of which means, it's probably impossible to kill a tardigrade

(bouncy, rhythmic music)

Subtitles and vocabulary

B2 H-INT US tardigrade moss space rhythmic music space shuttle curling

What Is A Water Bear?

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    Mikae Wu   posted on 2016/03/02
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