Which is the eldest living thing on the planet?
This is somewhat difficult to measure since the huge majority of life on the planet does not have a birth certificate with a date of birth, and does not go to annual health examinations by a doctor / veterinarian / gardener.
However, besides humans there are animals whose life expectancy can be tracked; turtles are popular as a long living creatures. Tuil Malila was 188 years old before she died in 1965. from natural causes . While she was young, she was given to Captain Cook in the age of colonialism, while there were still undiscovered continents in the southern oceans, while there were hornets in Europe and the nomadic state of the Genghis Khan Empire. In her last years of life, she had witnessed the first flight of man into the space.
But little less than two centuries is actually quite unimpressive; if you’ve ever eaten river mussels, maybe one of them was 250 years old. Arctica islandica, a species of shell living on the Arctic border, can live up to 500 years; yet, this is just the oldest of the few found and tested. And yes, it’s edible (local recipes say it’s the best with bacon). Using the microanalysis, thinner layers can be seen on its crust, originating from the times the shell had been starving for decades, due to Little Ice Age during the Middle Ages, the period of cooling that began in the 16th century.
Born in the time when the Tatars had invaded into Medieval Europe. Arctica islandica – cold sea shell. I guess that’s why he has “arctic” in its name.
You may think that long-living species will be more primitive, but the Greenland Shark (live much more interesting than shellfish) lives from 350 to 510 years. They need 150 years to gain sexual maturity and their meat is poisonous. And they eat horses. It is not known exactly how, but horse’s remains were found in their stomachs. And they have parasites in their eyes that glow in the dark. Yes, seriously. But do not google pictures of that.
The Greenland shark follows the ship to make sure all crew members are safe. What a friendly animal.
The sequel to the series The Oldest Living Creatures (2/5) ON THIS LINK (<- CLICK)