|What is the Longest-Living Animal?
Friday April 4, 2008
The animal with the most birthdays to date goes to a quahog clam plucked from the cold Icelandic waters in 2007. The tiny mollusk would need quite a lung capacity to extinguish the possible 400 candles on its cake.
On average, members of the quahog clan don't live nearly as long. When talking about the longest and shortest life spans, scientists refer to the average age at which an organism is expected to die. Maximum life spans highlight those individuals whose ages "break the molds."
The Galápagos tortoise has an average life span of more than 150 years. They certainly take advantage of their lengthy lives, ambling around at a sluggish 0.16 miles per hour (0.26 kilometers per hour).
Some life-span chart toppers include:
American box turtle — 120 years
Bowhead whale — 60 to 70 years (though bowheads exceeding 200 years have been reported)
Elephant — 70 years
Human — 70 to 80 years
Some animals are born and die in the seeming blink of the eye, including:
Adult housefly — 4 weeks
Worker bee — 5 weeks
Ant (Worker) — ½ year
Opossum — 1 year
Ant (Queen) — 3 years
Rat — 2 to 3 years
|Scientific Name: Balaena mysticetus Linnaeus, 1758
English – Bowhead Whale, Greenland Right Whale, Bowhead
French – Baleine de Grande Baie, Baleine du Groenland
Spanish – Ballena Boreal, Ballena de Groenlandia