We all have at some time fantasized about having the gift of immortality, Here is the question which animal lives the longest? We see huge diversity in nature. From rodents having a lifespan of a single year to animals living more than five hundred years! Well, this article has 10 animals who, although not immortal, have lifespans expanding multiple human generations! For all of these animals, longevity in lifespan doesn’t come from any special care or food or nutrient supplied by humans artificially, rather it’s their bodies that have evolved like this to survive for so long. So, let’s dive into the list of the top 10 longest living animals.
Longest Living Animals
1. Immortal Jellyfish (infinite)
Trait becoming the name, the Turitopsis dohrnii (also immortal jellyfish) can be found in oceans all over the world, from tropical to Arctic regions. This type of jellyfish is one of its kind and is believed to be sort of ‘immortal’. To understand its immortality, we have to first understand its birth. A jellyfish’s life begins in the form of a larva, also known as a planula.
Initially, a planula swims but then they settle down on the ocean bottom growing a cylindrical colony of polyps. Then they start growing and reach the stage of adulthood in mere weeks. Now, coming back to immortality, whenever they starve or have physical damage, they take a step back (in their life cycle) and transform back into a polyp. This is almost like a rebirth. This phenomenon was first observed in 1990 in these transparent swimmers.
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2. Ocean quahog (500+ years)
Have you ever wondered how old your food can be? Let me rephrase it, what age can be the fish or claim that you may be eating? Well, ocean quahogs are a species of edible clams that have an average life span of 200 years. The oldest clam alive on this planet is of the age 504 and his name is Ming.
Ming was found at the coast of Iceland in 2006, scientists precisely examined his shell rings after 7 years in 2013 and his real age came out to be around 504. He is now enchanting nature and animal lover in National Museum in Cardiff, Wales for more than a decade. Who could have believed that a clam has survived a lifetime more than that of seven humans?
Image Source: Wikimedia
3. Greenland Shark (270+)
These cold-blooded predators have kept scientists worldwide baffled about their correct lifespan. Greenland sharks’ body structure lacks the features which aid us to determine their age because other sharks have growth bands on their fin spines or the vertebrae. Till now we don’t have a precise number, but scientists have estimated its age by observing its growth rate of 1 centimetre per year and the full length up to which it can grow as 6 meters giving us the approximate age of more than 270 years!
Image Source: Wikimedia
4. Bowhead Whale (200+)
Scientists had measured the approximate age of this gigantic creature by studying the stone harpoon tips in their blubber, and by analyzing its eye tissue. A Bowhead whale, is believed, can live up to 200 years. By the way, it has not only one of the longest life spans, but this whale is also comes under one of the heaviest animals present on the planet.
But the dark side of this story is, that the small number of Bowhead whales that are alive are on the brink of extinction. Habitat loss and hunting in past years have proved to be disastrous for the whole species.
Image Source: UW News(Flickr)
5. Koi Fish (200+)
A koi fish named Hanako holds the record for the longest-living freshwater fish that has ever existed. She died at an age of 226 on July 7, 1977. The name ‘Hanako’ meant “flower girl” in Japanese. Her actual age was verified by analyzing the rings on her scale. It is believed that there may be more Koi fishes that are older than her, but this record isn’t surpassed yet.
Image Source: Wikimedia
6. Red Sea Urchin (150+)
It was believed that red sea urchins live to be only seven to 15 years of age. But the latest technologies had two new methods to do so – one biochemical and the other nuclear, which can give more precise results.
The studies show red sea urchins can have a vast lifespan surpassing that of virtually all terrestrial and most marine animal species and seem to show almost no signs of senescence, or age-related dysfunction, right up until the day that something kills them. Getting attacked or getting harvested by humans is the main reason for their death. Otherwise, a 100-year-old sea urchin is as physically and reproductively good as a 10-year-old urchin.
Image Source: Wikimedia
7. Galapagos Giant Tortoise (150+)
Tortoise, you must have seen these land-dwelling reptiles. They are mainly known for their hard shell and slow speed. But another interesting trait they have is their long lifespan. Many species of turtles are believed to live more than 100 years.
The Galapagos Giant Tortoise is among one of the largest and long-living tortoises. The longest G.G. Tortoise ever lived was Harriet. She was born around 1830 and had aged 175 when died. She spent her long life in Australia with two decades in the Australian Zoo. It is also known for its best animal patterns in the world.
8. Longfin Eel (90+)
One of the longest living animals, the Longfin eel is a type of eel that can be found in Australian and New Zealand waters. Its habitat covers the entire Australian East Coast from Cape York to Melbourne and from northern and eastern Tasmania and Lord Howe Island. The oldest recorded eel that ever existed was 106 years old. They are slow growers and normally grow only about 1-2 centimeters a year. Their length can reach up to 75-100 cm.
Image Source: karlnorling(Flickr)
9. African Elephant (60-70)
Elephants are currently the largest and heaviest mammals roaming on the land. Elephants also have a decent lifespan; the Asian Elephant could survive till the age of about 45-50 years while the African elephant lives about 60-70 years. It is also listed as one of the most amazing forest animals in the world.
These gentle-but-giant herbivores grassland animals can be easily distinguished between the Asian and African ones by looking at the size of their ears. Although the species is rapidly getting endangered due to the poaching practices of humans. It is also one of the biggest animals in the world.
10. Macaw (50+)
Macaws are long-tailed and colorful birds that are blue and belong to New World Parrots. They are inhabitants of the forests of North, South, and Central America. Generally, Macaws are types of parrots that live between 30-35 years but they can have a lifespan of 50 if given favorable conditions. Fun Fact-Once a macaw was claimed to be of 112 years old in 2011, but the claim was proved to be false.
It is one of the We all have at some time fantasized about having the gift of immortality, Here is the question which animal lives the longest? We see huge diversity in nature. So, let’s dive into the list of the top 10 longest living animals in the form of birds in the world.
These are the longest lifespan animals in the world. Kindly share and do post your comments.