Prairie Dog: Rocket varmint.

Roger, We Are Gopher Launch

Roger, We Are Gopher Launch

Bad Astronomy
The entire universe in blog form
March 19 2015 12:00 PM

You Are Gopher Launch

prairiedog_rocket

After this morning’s post, we all need a Unicorn Chaser.

I don’t usually post cute animal videos, but this one is pretty dang cute and is at least marginally apropos of the blog: At the Russian Baikonur Cosmodrome rocket launch site, a prairie dog made its home in the ground. Not just anywhere, though: Right in the middle of the rail tracks over which a monster transporter moves.

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Someone put a pretty nice webcam on the side of the hole, facing the launch site, where a Proton rocket waits for launch!

(I suggest setting the playback to 2x the normal rate.)

I love how the rodent watches the people moving … until its observations are so rudely interrupted. Also, if you’re going to install a camera in an animal’s hidey hole, make sure it’s secured well!

By the way, a lot of sites are calling the animal a gopher, but it looks more like a prairie dog to me. If there are any varmint experts reading, I’m listening.

Tip o' the nose cone to Jason Davis via Emily Lakdawalla.