The worlds first (known) Spidernaut passed away on the morning of December 3rd, less than a week after having been relocated to the “Insect Zoo” exhibit in the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C. Nefertiti, a Johnson Jumper spider, was one of a batch of creepy-crawlies delivered to the International Space Station in July as part of the YouTube Space Lab series of experiments. There she learned to adapt her native hunting practices to zero gravity and capture less lucky spaceborne insects.
After a 100 day stint on the orbiting laboratory, Nefertiti returned to Terra Firma in October. Under the watchful eyes NASA, the spidernaut successfully readapted to a gravity-centric world.
Nefertiti was moved to the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C. on November 29th. It seems that living in the spotlight would be the heroic fly-sucker’s undoing. Actually, this species of spider only has a typical lifespan of one year. Nefertiti was 10 months at time of death. The space bug’s remains will remain on exhibit at the museum.
Let Nefertiti stand as an example to all the rest of you creepy bugs out there: You can do it! Get the hell off my planet!