A frog has photobombed the launch of Nasa's LADEE space rocket, currently on its way to the Moon.

The poor animal was caught on camera silhouetted against the roar of the engines.

The LADEE (Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer) lifted off from the Wallops facility in Virginia on Friday.

The £180 million mission will study the thin atmosphere that surrounds the Moon for about 100 days before making a planned crash on the Lunar surface.

Nasa has confirmed the picture of the amphibian caught in the midst of the launch is genuine, and has not been doctored. A date below the image is incorrect - it was taken in 2013, not 2012. Nasa said:

"The photo team confirms the frog is real and was captured in a single frame by one of the remote cameras used to photograph the launch. The condition of the frog, however, is uncertain."

Sadly the frog is not the first animal casualty to have been suffered during a rocket launch. In 2009 a bat (quickly dubbed 'Space Bat') was seen clinging to the side of an external tank during the launch of Space Shuttle Discovery (STS-119). A doctor at the time said the bat probably had a broken wing and was unable to fly away, but was incinerated during launch.

Take a look below.

nasa


In the meantime our Photoshop-happy editor has offered his own tribute:

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  • Black Cat Bomb

    "You'd rather take a picture of a straw than take one of me?

  • Shocked Cat Bomb

    Who's bombing who?

  • Behind Bomb

    "Ignore me!"

  • Penguin Bomb

    "What are you reading?"

  • Cat Bomb

    Watch out, baby!

  • MySpace Bomb

    At least someone is trying to stop these from happening.

  • Tail Bomb

    Nothing like a perfectly timed tail.

  • Jumping Dog Bomb

    The beer is poison!

  • WTF Bomb

    "Why are you taking pictures of butts?"

  • Nature Documentary Bomb

    It's cool, he's the new boom mic operator.

  • Riding Bomb

    "My turn next!"

  • Smiling Cat Bomb

    Just really happy to be here.

  • Dog Bomb

    "Oh sorry, wrong room."

  • Red Fish Bomb

    At least that last guy is in the picture.

  • Old School Bomb

    This cat's great-grandchildren are probably in this slideshow as well.

  • Driving Bomb

    "Turn left on Sunset."

  • Watching The Baby Bomb

    "I want to sit on the chair."

  • Stealth Cat Bomb

    Sneak attack is underway.

  • Censoring Dog Bomb

    Stopping inappropriate Facebook photo uploads since 2008.

  • Horse Bomb

    How is he even doing that with his neck?

  • Computer Cat Bomb

    What are you doing here?

  • Another Sneaky Cat Bomb

    Also: <a href="http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/soon" target="_hplink">"Soon"</a>

  • Giraffe Bomb

    Talk about a third wheel.

  • Sneak Attack Bomb

    The other cat REALLY doesn't like glamour shots.

  • Shopping Cat Bomb

    "Um, I think someone forgot my Fancy Feast."

  • Dinner Bomb

    "Do I smell fish?"

  • Let Me Out Bomb

    "Um, a little help?"

  • Curious Giraffe Bomb

    What is this contraption.

  • Underwater Bomb

    We're assuming that this guy was attempting to take an underwater selfie.

  • Disapproving Cat Bomb

    He does not approve.

  • Night Vision Cat Bomb

    His night vision is perfect for interrupting hipster photo shoots.

  • Meerkat Attack Bomb

    He stood on that pinecone to get in this photo: commitment.

  • Landscape Bomb

    "Sorry, did I ruin your postcard?"

  • Family Photo Bomb

    Still part of the family.

  • Beluga Bomb

    Maybe planned, still terrific.

  • Another Jumping Dog Bomb

    "My husband and I were taking our border collie, Jack, out for his daily beach run and play. (This) is the photo of him being photobombed. I didn't see the dog until I saw it on the screen after the photo was taken."- Submitted By Laura Hancock

  • Waterbuck Calf Bomb

    "I was trying to take a picture of this cute Waterbuck calf, when it's mom stepped in to see what I was doing to her baby...LOL." Submitted by: Karen Stephens

  • Curious Dog Bomb

    "What, what is this?"

  • Sneak Attack Dog Bomb

    "I was taking a picture of my cat Simon one day when Teddy got a bit jealous (like he always does). Hope you enjoy!" Submitted by: Hali Jakeman

  • Green Bird Bomb

    Submitted by: Karen Lyons Kalmenson

  • Scary Cat Bomb

    In our experience cats really do hate driving.

  • Jumping Dog Bomb

    This dog is huge!

  • Cat From Above Bomb

    Where was this cat standing?

  • Corner Dog Bomb

    Submitted By: Kylee Callahan

  • "Soon" Bomb

    "Here is Badger, completely unaware of his archenemy Groucho doing the bombing..." -Submitted By: Kimberly Rai Cook

  • Smooth Dog Photobomb

    Submitted By: Heather Smith Robitzek

  • NSFW Llama Bomb

    Submitted By: Christopher Guignon

  • Kissing Bomb

    Hey! Me too, right?

  • Growl Bomb

    Submitted By: Alan Kelly

  • Dachshund Bomb

    "Photobomb of my dachshund with my then 3-month-old daughter." -Submitted By: Melanie Walsh

  • Bird Bomb

    Submitted By: Jean Seraichyk