Given the vast diversity of species found in the world—which includes everything from massive whales to small insects—it is not unexpected that many animals have far longer lifespans than others. Although it may seem unlikely, it is true that there are animals that can live forever! There are many creatures with remarkably long lifespans, even though this unique species is the only one that can accomplish it. Discover which animals have the longest lifespans in the world by continuing to read!
1. Loggerhead Sea Turtle — 67 Years
With a maximum lifetime of 67 years, the loggerhead sea turtle is the first animal on the list. Typically growing to a maximum length of 3.5 feet, larger loggerhead sea turtles are not completely unknown. With a wide geographic range, loggerhead sea turtles can be found in tropical and subtropical areas of the Mediterranean, the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic seas. Threats to this species’ vulnerability include the disappearance of appropriate nesting locations and predators that prey on the eggs and young.
2. Saltwater Crocodile — 70 Years
The saltwater crocodile, which can live up to 70 years, is the next animal. With a maximum length of 20 feet, saltwater crocodiles, sometimes known as “salties,” are formidable apex predators. They eat almost anything they can get their hands on and have the strongest bite force of any mammal. Saltwater crocodiles can be found in brackish rivers, wetlands, and certain freshwater rivers in Australia, India, and Southeast Asia.
3. African Elephant — 70 Years
With an estimated lifespan of 70 years, the African elephant is the land mammal with the longest longevity. The African bush elephant is the largest of the two species: African forest elephants and African bush elephants.
Male African bush elephants are usually larger than females, yet they can weigh over ten tons and grow to a height of thirteen feet at the shoulder. African elephant tusks can develop several inches a year and can reach a maximum length of five to eight feet.
Elephants are matriarchal animals, with the oldest female typically leading groups of females and calves. Animals can be seen in herds of ten to fifty. Nevertheless, male elephants may establish smaller “bachelor herds” or remain alone most of the time.
4. Blue Whale — 90 Years
With a length of up to 100 feet, the blue whale is the biggest whale and the largest mammal on the planet right now. With the exception of the Arctic, most waters are home to these enormous baleen whales, which can live up to 90 years. As an endangered species, blue whales are currently mostly threatened by boat crashes and entanglement in fishing nets. But in the past, they were nearly exterminated by hunting. They catch krill by swimming into the krill cloud and then sifting the water back out of their mouths. As baleen whales, they consume enormous amounts of krill.
5. Tuatara — 100 Years
The tuatara, which may live up to 100 years old, is another animal that makes the list of creatures with the longest lifespans. Since tuataras are the only members of an order of reptiles that have survived for more than 200 million years, they are frequently referred to as “living fossils.”
The largest reptiles in New Zealand are tuataras, which are native to the region. Adult males can grow to a maximum length of 18 inches. Their hue can vary over their existence, but it is usually greenish or brownish. They have spines down their backs as well, albeit the males have more of them. Tuataras consume a wide range of reptiles, birds, and insects. However, huge birds of prey and rats feast on them.
6. Aldabra Giant Tortoise — 150 Years
The Aldabra giant tortoise, which can live up to 150 years, is the first of two tortoises with extended lifespans. The Aldabra giant tortoises are native to the Seychelles’ Aldabra Atoll, where they live in sand dunes and scrublands. They can weigh up to 550 pounds and have a shell that is formed like a dome. They are typically four feet long.
Fruit, grass, and a variety of leaves are consumed by Aldabra giant tortoises. Each clutch, which consists of up to 25 eggs, is laid in a nest that is about a foot deep. When they hatch, the youngsters are about six inches long.
7. Galapagos Giant Tortoise — 150 Years
The Galapagos giant tortoise, which is thought to be the largest species of live tortoise in the world, likewise has a 150-year lifespan. Originating from the Galápagos Islands, they usually inhabit lowland areas where they consume a diverse range of plants, including cacti, flowers, grasses, and fruit.
Giant tortoises from the Galapagos Islands can grow to be six feet long and weigh over 400 pounds. The two primary forms of their shells are saddleback and domed. Whereas domed shells have a classic dome shape, saddleback shells rise forward at the front to form a saddle shape.
8. Red Sea Urchin — 200 Years
With a lifespan of 200 years, the red sea urchin, which inhabits the Pacific Ocean coast between Alaska and Baja California, makes the list. The spines of red sea urchins are around three inches long and measure about seven inches wide.
9. Rougheye Rockfish — 200 Years
With a lifespan of up to 200 years, rougheye rockfish is the next species on the list. In the North Pacific, rougheye rockfish live between 495 and 1,485 feet below the surface. They usually reside near rocks and fissures, close to the seafloor.
Rougheye rockfish typically have a darker patch on their operculum and are pink or tan in color, measuring about 31 inches in length. Their lower eyelids are similarly covered in many spines. In addition to shrimp and crabs, a range of smaller fish are the prey of rougheye rockfish.
10. Bowhead Whale — 200 Years
The bowhead whale is the longest-living mammal and the animal with the fourth-longest lifespan in the planet. Their estimated lifespan is 200 years, and the discovery of a 130-year-old harpoon tip in a single bowhead whale by scientists lends credence to this estimate.
Baleen whales, such as the bowhead, inhabit the icy waters of the Arctic and subarctic. They can break through the heavy layers of ice to reach the surface and breathe thanks to their unusual bow-shaped head. Their baleen plates measure about 10 feet in length, and they can grow up to 60 feet in length.
11. Greenland Shark — 250 to 400 Years
With a remarkable lifespan ranging from 250 to 400 years, the Greenland shark is without a doubt the oldest shark in the world. As apex predators, greenland sharks live in the North Atlantic and Arctic seas. Amazingly, they will occasionally even eat moose that they grab while swimming between nearby islands.
With a maximum length of 23 feet, greenland sharks are among the biggest shark species. Their bodies are sturdy, and their noses are rounded and blunt. Additionally, their dorsal and pectoral fins are notably tiny. The growth rate of greenland sharks is slow, and they take over a century to achieve sexual maturity.
12. Ocean Quahog — 500 Years
Having a lifespan of approximately 500 years, the ocean quahog comes in second. Clams that are indigenous to the Atlantic Ocean are called ocean quahogs. They can grow up to two inches tall and are usually spherical. The exceptionally slow growth rate of ocean quahogs contributes to their extended lifespan.
13. Immortal Jellyfish — Forever
Because of its capacity for self-regeneration, the immortal jellyfish has the longest lifespan of any animal on Earth. The small, bell-shaped animals known as immortal jellyfish have a length of only 0.18 inches. They are found in temperate to tropical oceans worldwide and consume a wide range of plankton, larvae, and fish eggs.
When an adult jellyfish is hurt, it contracts in on itself and takes 24 to 36 hours to return to its previous life stage—a polyp—which is how immortal jellyfish rejuvenate themselves. After that, it reverts to adulthood. Still, a great range of different species prey on immortal jellyfish in spite of their eternal condition.