Five brave geckos sent to space for zero-gravity sex experiments have died, Russian officials announced.
On Monday, the descent module containing the lusty lizards and other experiments from the Foton-M4 satellite launched in July returned to Earth.
"All geckos, unfortunately, died," the Russian Federal Space Agency said in a statement translated by Google.
“According to the preliminary information, it became clear the geckos froze," an official told Interfax, per a translation in The Guardian. "Most likely, this happened due to a failure of the equipment meant to ensure the temperature of the box with the animals.”
Officials believe the geckos have been dead for at least a week as they were not only frozen but also mummified. On a more positive note, however, fruit flies also engaged in experiments aboard the satellite of love were doing just fine.
"The fruit flies were in a perfect condition: they produced offspring," a source was quoted as saying, according to RT.
The mission was in jeopardy shortly after liftoff when the satellite stopped responding to commands, Russia's mission control said. Fortunately, the team was able to regain control of the spacecraft.