True Facts: The Incredible Tardigrade

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This video was made in collaboration with Benedikt Pleyer, who is a gifted microscopist and has a wonderful contagious passion for discovering the incredible worlds that exist all around us. He has introduced me to all sorts of new creatures and I am fortunate to have met him.

Kita Williams reached out to me almost a year ago with her amazing Tardigrade footage, and I am so happy that she did. She has a knack for capturing these animals in way that gives them so much personality!

Bob Goldstein runs a lab at UNC Chapel Hill and has done incredible work on the Tardigrade (and much more.) He was kind enough to review my work to make sure I didn’t screw the science up too much! I wish I could have included more of his work on the evolution of Tardigrades – but I hope to do that in a future episode on arthropods.

Thank you to the following for publishing their images
under the CC license, it is a huge contribution to
science communication.

Water bear (tardigrade), Hypsibius dujardini,
scanning electron micrograph by
Bob Goldstein and Vicky Madden.

Scanning electron micrograph of active hydrated
Echiniscoides sigismundi by Thomas L. Sørensen-Hygum,
Robyn M. Stuart, Aslak Jørgensen & Nadja Møbjerg.

New Echiniscidae (Heterotardigrada) from Amber
Mountain (Northern Madagascar) by Gąsiorek P, Vončina K (2019)

Thank you to all of my Patreon patrons for the
patience, support and feedback


“BackBay Lounge” by
Kevin MacLeod

Additional footage used under
license from:


  1. Man, I always get so excited when you upload something! Your humor and new facts literally get me through my day sometimes. This is also great ASMR stuff on low volume; helps me sleep quite well. Can't wait until your next upload! I know it takes quite a lot of effort to make each one so I will be as patient as humanly possible lol. Thanks for doing what you do, man. It means more than you know.

  2. Well considering these things are microscopic I would definitely believe that they would "resist" radiation that can kill a human considering radiation goes through things at super speed to the point of knocking out atoms within your DNA thus fucking up your DNA and best case scenario killing your cells, the worst case is the cells go insane and turn into cancer, or possibly even severing some DNA strands that end up getting bunched into other pieces and becoming viruses! So yes i would say the fact that humans are quite a lot more vulnerable to radiation than an animal that is trillions of times smaller than us….

  3. Ze: No we can't sell that as merch Jerry, there's staples in it!
    Me, who also watches Baumgartner Restoration: well what if we use steel tacks? I want a stress-ball tardigrade dangit 😂

  4. Ah, indestructible, cute, tiny, asexual. Have claws and horns like dragons. This is why water bears are my favourite creature.

  5. Does anyone have more information regarding the genus battleleapus? I cannot find more information via the google and I would love to read more about them.

    Thanks for another awesome video, Zefrank!

  6. When you said they poop crystals that reminds me of the troll movie which I hate because it was like a drug trip. Why is that movie so crazy I'm trying to learn about these things and this is what it reminds me of.

  7. Loved the narration. Haven't laughed so hard in a while. Glad I did learn quite a bit about these little creatures. I had heard about them but didn't know their name.