When Felix Baumgartner made a historic jump from the edge of space last month, there was one thing we forgot to mention — a rubber chicken did it first. Enter Camilla Corona: a brave bird who flew solo via hot air balloon in April, during a solar radiation storm, no less, to the limits of the Earth's atmosphere. During the flight, Camilla collected radiation data for NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, who recruited the rubber chicken to tweet, pin, blog, and travel on its behalf. Camilla's main mission is to educate her audience about the sun and space weather through social media and appearances around the world.
But the real reason why Camilla is one of our favorite geeks? She's encouraging girls to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) by trying to become an astronaut herself. That's right: the rubber chicken is training for spaceflight. She's exercising, attending classes, and studying in order to become the first fowl in space. We applaud Camilla in her efforts to inspire young girls to become space explorers, and proudly present some of the NASA mascot's best Instagram moments.