The galactic Zoo Pt. XII: Offplanet Life #10273

by MadScientist - opened

Since the beginning of space exploration, mankind has repeatedly found evidence of the resilience of life in space.
Offplanet Space is a hostile environment for any form of life, but some exceptionally resistant organisms do survive.
Such extremophiles can migrate between planets and distribute life throughout the universe, which corresponds to the panspermia hypothesis about the interplanetary transfer of life. Whether it is a natural phenomenon or due to the activities of alien civilizations engaged in bio-engineering is still open to debate.
It may have started with stones - loaded with bacteria and other microorganisms - being thrown into space when their planets broke apart...

Cross cut of an asteroid fragment containing fossilized worms:
micromacro 67.jpeg

Asteroids covered with photosynthesizing algae-like growth:
weed 7.jpeg
weed 5.jpeg

Other biological structures found on some asteroids:
micromacro 115.jpeg
micromacro 103.jpeg

Moving asteroid inhabitants:
micromacro 102.jpeg
micromacro 126.jpeg
micromacro 127.jpeg

Tumbleweed-like 100m diameter bushes, also known as Dyson Trees:
weed 1.jpeg
weed 4.jpeg
weed 3.jpeg
micromacro 62.jpeg

When sunlight is abundant,
leaves do what leaves always do:
Starseed 18.jpeg
Starseed 19.jpeg

When sunlight is scarce,
Crystals with optical fibers collect and deliver every little bit of starlight to a photosynthetic node at the center of the plant:
weed 10.jpeg
weed 11.jpeg

Without an asteroid, light-sails serve as an anchor against the homestar's gravitational pull:
Starseed 14.jpeg
Starseed 15.jpeg
Starseed 16.jpeg

With the biggest of solar sails, plants may even untie themselves from their mother stars and drift off, slowly but surely, into interstellar space.
Riding the solar winds for eons, they become The Starseed - the mysterious travellers. Nobody can ever tell where they are going to, nor where they came from.
Starseed 13.jpeg
Starseed 8.jpeg
Starseed 12.jpeg
Starseed 1.jpeg