List of longest-living organisms
This is a list of the Longest Living Organisms that includes oldest individual bioforms. This is usually defined as:
- (a) Having a longer life-span than any other known individual species (such as the Methuselah tree)
- (b) Record Holders, such as Human Longevity certified record-holders (such as Jeanne Calment)
If the mortality rate of a species does not increase after maturity, the species does not age and is said to be biologically immortal. There are many examples of plants and animals for which the mortality rate actually decreases with age, for all or part of the life cycle.
If the mortality rate remains constant, the rate determines the mean life-span. The life-span can be long or short, even though the species technically "does not age".
- Sanicula is a herb, native to Europe and the Americas, which lives about seventy years in the wild. Old saniculae do not die at a higher rate than younger ones.
- Sea urchins and some clams have relatively high rates of mortality in the ocean, but mortality does not appear to increase with age.
Other species have been observed to regress to a larval state and regrow into adults multiple times.
- The Hydrozoan species Turritopsis dohrnii is capable of cycling from a mature adult stage to an immature polyp stage and back again. This means that there may be no natural limit to its life-span. However, no single specimen has been observed for any extended period, and it is impossible to estimate the age of a specimen.
- The larvae of carrion beetles have been created to undergo a degree of "reversed development" when starved, and later to grow back to the previously attained level of maturity. The cycle can be repeated many times.
Revived into activity after stasis
- Various claims have been made about reviving bacterial spores to active metabolism after millions of years. There are claims of spores from amber being revived after forty million years, and spores from salt deposits in New Mexico being revived after 240,000,000 years. In a related find, a scientist was able to coax 34,000 year old salt-captured bacteria to reproduce and his results were duplicated at a separate independent laboratory facility.
- A seed from the previously extinct Judean date palm was revived and managed to sprout after nearly 2,000 years.
- Silene stenophylla was grown from fruit found in an ancient squirrel's cache. The germinated plants bore viable seeds. The fruit was dated to be 31,800 years old ± 300 years.
- In 1994, a seed from a sacred lotus (Nelumbo nucifera), dated at roughly 1,300 years old ± 270 years, was successfully germinated.
Clonal plant and fungi colonies
As with all long-lived plant and fungal species, no individual part of a clonal colony is alive (in the sense of active metabolism) for more than a very small fraction of the life of the entire colony. Some clonal colonies may be fully connected via their root systems, while most are not actually interconnected, but are genetically identical clones which populated an area through vegetative reproduction. Ages for clonal colonies, often based on current growth rates, are estimates.
- Pando is a Populus tremuloides (Quaking Aspen) tree or clonal colony that has been estimated at 80,000 years old. Unlike many other clonal "colonies" the above-ground trunks remain connected to each other via a single massive subterranean root system. Whether it is to be considered a single tree is disputed, as it depends on one's definition of an individual tree.
- The Jurupa Oak colony is estimated to be at least 13,000 years old, with other estimates ranging from 5,000 to 30,000 years old.
- A huge colony of the sea grass Posidonia oceanica in the Mediterranean Sea is estimated to be between 12,000 and 200,000 years old. The maximum age is theoretical, as the region it occupies was above water at some point between 10,000 and 80,000 years ago.
- Lomatia tasmanica in Tasmania: the sole surviving clonal colony of this species is estimated to be at least 43,600 years old.
- Eucalyptus recurva: clones in Australia are claimed to be thirteen millennia old.
- King Clone is a creosote bush (Larrea tridentata) in the Mojave desert estimated at 11,700 years old. Another creosote bush has been said to be 12,150 years old, but this is as yet unconfirmed.
- A Huon Pine colony on Mount Read, Tasmania, is estimated at 10,000 years old, with individual specimens living to over 3,000 years.
- Old Tjikko, a Norway Spruce in Sweden, is a tree on top of roots that have been carbon dated to 9,550 years old. The tree is part of a clonal colony that was established at the end of the last ice age. Discovered by Professor Leif Kullman, at Umeå University, the tree is located in the county of Dalarna in Sweden. Old Tjikko is small, only 5 metres (16 ft) in height.
- A box huckleberry bush in Pennsylvania is thought to be perhaps eight millennia old.
- "Humongous Fungus," an individual of the fungus species Armillaria solidipes in the Malheur National Forest, is thought to be between 2,000 and 8,500 years old. It is thought to be the world's largest organism by area, at 2,384 acres (965 hectares).
Some endoliths have extremely long lives. In August 2013 researchers reported evidence of endoliths in the ocean floor with a generation time of ten millennia. These are slowly metabolizing, not in a dormant state.
Individual plant specimens
- A Great Basin Bristlecone Pine (Pinus longaeva) is measured by ring count to be 5064 years old. This is the oldest known tree in North America, and the oldest known living individual tree in the world.
- Llangernyw Yew may be the oldest individual tree in Europe and second or third oldest individual tree in the world. Believed to be aged between 4,000 years and 5,000 years old, this ancient yew (Taxus baccata) is in the churchyard of the village of Llangernyw in North Wales.
- Fortingall Yew, an ancient yew (Taxus baccata) in the churchyard of the village of Fortingall in Perthshire, Scotland; one of the oldest known individual trees in Europe. Various estimates have put its age at between 2000 and 5000 years, although these days it is believed to be at the lower end of this range.
- Fitzroya cupressoides is the species with the second oldest verified age, a specimen in Chile being measured by ring count as 3,622 years old.
- A Sacred Fig (Ficus religiosa), the Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi in Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka, is 2,300 years old (planted in 288 BC). It is the oldest known living to date human-planted tree in the world.
- A specimen of Lagarostrobos franklinii in Tasmania is thought to be about 2000 years old.
- Numerous olive trees are purported to be 2000 years old or older. An olive tree in Ano Vouves, Crete, claiming such longevity, has been confirmed on the basis of tree ring analysis.
- Jōmon Sugi, the cryptomeria naturally grown in Yakushima Island, Kagoshima, Japan, more than 2,170 to 7,200 years old.
- Great sugi of Kayano, the cryptomeria deemed planted by humans in Kaga, Ishikawa, Japan, estimated age of 2,300 years in 1928.
- Welwitschia is a monotypic genus of gymnosperm plant, composed solely of the distinct Welwitschia mirabilis. It is the only genus of the family Welwitschiaceae, in the order Welwitschiales, in the division Gnetophyta. The plant is considered a living fossil. Radiocarbon dating has confirmed that there are many individuals which have lived longer than 1000 years, and some are suspected to be older than 2000 years.
- Yareta is a tiny flowering plant in the family Apiaceae native to South America, occurring in the Puna grasslands of the Andes in Peru, Bolivia, the north of Chile and the west of Argentina at between 3,200 and 4,500 metres altitude. Some yaretas could be up to 3,000 years old.
- Jeanne Calment, lived to the age of 122 years, 164 days, becoming the oldest recorded Human who ever lived. She died on August 4th, 1997.
- Adwaita, an Aldabra giant tortoise, died at an estimated age of 250 in March 2006 in Alipore Zoo, Kolkata, India. If verified, it will have been the oldest terrestrial animal in the world.
- Tu'i Malila, a radiated tortoise, died at an age of 188 years in May 1965, at the time the oldest verified vertebrate.
- Jonathan, a Seychelles giant tortoise living on the island of Saint Helena, is reported to be about 183 years old, and may therefore be the oldest currently living terrestrial animal if the claim is true.
- Harriet, a Galápagos tortoise, died at the age of 175 years in June 2006.
- Timothy, a Greek tortoise, died at an age of 160 years in April 2004.
- The tuatara can live well above 100 years. Henry, a tuatara at the Southland Museum in New Zealand, mated for the first time at the age of 111 years in 2009 with an 80-year-old female and fathered 11 baby tuatara.
- Muja, an American alligator from Belgrade Zoo, is considered[who?] to be the oldest alligator in the world. Muja is more than 80 years old.
- A female blue-and-yellow macaw named Charlie was reportedly hatched in 1899, which would make her 116 years old, as of 2015. Her age has not been independently confirmed and the claim may not be reliable. She is claimed to have formerly belonged to Winston Churchill, but Churchill's daughter denies the claim.
- Lin Wang, an Asian elephant, was the oldest elephant in the Taipei Zoo. He was born in January 18th, 1917 and died in February 26th, 2003 at 86 years, surpassing the previous record of 84. Normally elephants live up to 50 years, while their maximum life-span is generally estimated at 70.
- A greater flamingo named Greater died at Adelaide Zoo in January 2014 at the age of at least 83.
- Thaao, an Andean condor, died at the age of 80.
- Cookie, (June 30th, 1933- ) an Australian born Major Mitchell's cockatoo resident at Brookfield Zoo, Illinois, is the oldest member of his species in captivity, at a verified age of 82.
- A female Laysan albatross named Wisdom successfully hatched a chick at Midway Atoll in February 2014, at the age of 63. As of 2014, she is the oldest known wild bird in the world.
- The oldest living horse on record was named Ol' Billy. Bill was allegedly born in the year 1760 in London, England. Bill died in 1822 at the age of sixty-two years. Henry Harrison, an occupant of London during the time, had also allegedly known Ol' Billy for fifty-nine years until Bill's death.
- Creme Puff, a cat owned by Jake Perry of Austin, Texas, was born August 3, 1967, and died three days after her 38th birthday on August 6, 2005.
- Debby, the Polar Bear, an inhabitant of the Assiniboine Park Zoo in Winnipeg, Canada was the oldest polar bear and third oldest Bear species on record when she died in 2008, at the age of forty-two years.
- Insects: Ant queens are claimed to be the longest-living insects, at least 30 years. However, there have been documented cases of the queen of a termite colony living for over 50 years, and some scientists believe it is possible they may live to be 100 years old. In cool climate, the old house borer may be up to 32 years old because of an extremely slow larval development.
- Some species of sponges in the ocean near Antarctica are thought to be ten millennia old.
- Specimens of the black coral genus Leiopathes are among the oldest continuously living organisms on the planet: around 4,265 years old.
- The giant barrel sponge Xestospongia muta is one of the longest-lived animals, with the largest specimens in the Caribbean estimated to be in excess of 2,300 years.
- The black coral Antipatharia in the Gulf of Mexico may live more than 2000 years.
- The Antarctic sponge Cinachyra antarctica has an extremely slow growth rate in the low temperatures of the Southern Ocean. One specimen has been estimated to be 1,550 years old.
- A specimen, "Ming" of the Icelandic Cyprine Arctica islandica (also known as an ocean quahog), a mollusk, was found to have lived 507 years. Another specimen had a recorded life span of 374 years.
- Some koi fish have reportedly lived more than 200 years, the oldest being Hanako, who died at an age of 226 years on July 7, 1977.
- Orange roughy, also known as Deep Sea Perch, can live up to 149 years.
- Some confirmed sources estimated bowhead whales to have lived at least to 211 years of age, making them the oldest mammals.
- The maximum life-span of the freshwater pearl mussel (Margaritifera margaritifera) may be 210–250 years.
- Specimens of the Red Sea Urchin, Strongylocentrotus franciscanus, have been found to be over 200 years old.
- The deep-sea hydrocarbon seep tubeworm Lamellibrachia luymesi (Annelida, Polychaeta) lives for more than 170 years.
- Tardigrades, capable of cryptobiosis, have been shown to survive nearly 120 years in a dry state.
- Geoduck, a species of saltwater clam native to the Puget Sound, have been known to live more than 160 years.
- George the lobster was estimated to be approximately 140 years old by PETA in January 2009.
- In 2012, a sturgeon was caught in a Wisconsin river that was estimated to be 125 years old.
- An orca of the "Southern Resident Community" identified as J-2 or Granny is estimated to be the oldest orca in the entire community and is 103 years old, as of 2014.
- A Swedish man claimed that a European eel named Ale was 155 years old when it died in 2014. If correct, it would have been the world's oldest, having been born in 1859.
- Biological immortality
- Largest organism
- List of oldest dogs
- List of oldest trees
- Lists of organisms by population
- Maximum life span
- Oldest people and List of oldest people
- Ainsworth, C; Lepage, M (2007). "Evolution's greatest mistakes". New Scientist 195 (2616): 36–39. doi:10.1016/S0262-4079(07)62033-8.
- Martínez, Daniel E. (1998). "Mortality patterns suggest lack of senescence in Hydra". Experimental Gerontology (Elsevier Science Inc) 33 (3): 217–225. doi:10.1016/S0531-5565(97)00113-7. PMID 9615920.
- Gilbert, Scott F. (2010). "The Immortal Life Cycle of Turritopsis". Developmental Biology (9th ed.). Sinauer Associates. ISBN 978-0-878-93384-6. Archived from the original on 2013-06-10.
- Beck, SD; Bharadwaj, RK (1972). "Reversed development and cellular aging in an insect". Science 178 (4066): 1210–1211. Bibcode:1972Sci...178.1210B. doi:10.1126/science.178.4066.1210. PMID 4637808.
- Cano, RJ; Borucki, MK (19 May 1995). "Revival and identification of bacterial spores in 25- to 40-million-year-old Dominican amber". Science 268 (5213): 1060–1064. Bibcode:1995Sci...268.1060C. doi:10.1126/science.7538699. PMID 7538699.
- "Oldest Living Thing". Extremescience.com. Retrieved 2010-03-17.
- "The Permian Bacterium that Isn't". Oxford Journals. 2001-02-15. Retrieved 2010-11-16.
- "34,000 Year Old Organisms Found Buried Alive!". Yahoo News. January 13, 2011. Retrieved January 31, 2013.
- Erlanger, Steven (June 12, 2005). "After 2,000 years, a seed from ancient Judea sprouts". The New York Times.
- Yashina, S.; Gubin, S.; Maksimovich, S.; Yashina, A.; Gakhova, E.; Gilichinsky, D. (2012). "Regeneration of whole fertile plants from 30,000-y-old fruit tissue buried in Siberian permafrost". Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 109 (10): 4008–13. doi:10.1073/pnas.1118386109. PMC 3309767. PMID 22355102.
- Shen-Miller; Mudgett, M. B.; William Schopf, J.; Clarke, S.; Berger, R. (1995). "Exceptional seed longevity and robust growth: Ancient sacred lotus from China". American Journal of Botany 82 (11): 1367–1380. doi:10.2307/2445863. JSTOR 2445863.
- Shen-Miller et al. (2002). "Long-living lotus: germination and soil gamma-irradiation of centuries-old fruits, and cultivation, growth, and phenotypic abnormalities of offspring". American Journal of Botany. Retrieved 2010-02-03.
Sacred lotus (Nelumbo nucifera) has been cultivated as a crop in Asia for thousands of years. An ~1300-yr-old lotus fruit, recovered from an originally cultivated but now dry lakebed in northeastern China, is the oldest germinated and directly 14C-dated fruit known. In 1996, we traveled to the dry lake at Xipaozi Village, China, the source of the old viable fruits.
- Gymnosperm Database (2 January 2007). "How Old Is That Tree?". Retrieved 2006-07-25.
- "Quaking Aspen". Bryce Canyon. National Park Service.
- Michael Reilly (December 23, 2009). "Ancient tree (almost) older than dirt". Discovery News. Retrieved Jan 15, 2015.
- Ibiza Spotlight (28 May 2006). "Ibiza's Monster Marine Plant". Archived from the original on 2006-08-27. Retrieved 2007-05-09.
- Pearlman, Jonathan (2012-02-07). "'Oldest living thing on earth' discovered". The Daily Telegraph (London).
- Arnaud-Haond, Sophie; Duarte, Carlos M.; Diaz-Almela, Elena; Marbà, Núria; Sintes, Tomas; Serrão, Ester A. (February 1, 2012). Bruun, Hans Henrik, ed. "Implications of Extreme Life Span in Clonal Organisms: Millenary Clones in Meadows of the Threatened Seagrass Posidonia oceanica". PLoS ONE (Public Library of Science) 7 (2): e30454. Bibcode:2012PLoSO...730454A. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0030454. PMC 3270012. PMID 22312426.
- Discovery Channel (21 October 1996). "Tasmanian bush could be oldest living organism". Retrieved 2006-07-25.[dead link]
- "Oldest Living Organism: Ancient Bacteria". Extreme Science. Retrieved January 31, 2013.
- "Plant Hall of Fame". Fact Monster. Retrieved January 31, 2013.
- "Native Conifers of Tasmania". Paks and Wildlife Service, Tasmania. Retrieved 2008-05-06.
- "Press release from Umeå University". Info.umu.se. Retrieved 2010-03-17.
- "Swedish spruce may be world's oldest living tree". Reuters. April 11, 2008.
- "Oldest Living Tree Found in Sweden". News.nationalgeographic.com. Retrieved 2010-03-17.
- "World's oldest living tree discovered in Sweden". Swedish Research Council. 16 April 2008.
- "Humongous Fungus A New Kind Of Individual". Science Daily. March 25, 2003.
- "Strange but True: The Largest Organism on Earth Is a Fungus". Scientific American. October 4, 2007.
- Bob Yirka Aug 29, 2013
- "Oldlist". Rocky Mountain Tree Ring Research. Retrieved 2013-01-08.
- Shanika SRIYANANDA (2011-07-03). "Caring for the Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi ". Retrieved 2012-01-24.
- "The Coming of the Bodhi Tree to Lanka".
- "Botanical Record Breakers: Amazing Trivia About Plants". Waynesword.palomar.edu. Retrieved 2010-03-17.
- Rackham, O; Moody, J (1996). The Making of the Cretan Landscape.
- Riley, FR (2002). "Olive Oil Production on Bronze Age Crete: Nutritional properties, Processing methods, and Storage life of Minoan olive oil". Oxford Journal of Archaeology 21 (1): 63–75. doi:10.1111/1468-0092.00149.
- Ralph, Carol Pearson (March 1978). "Observations on Azorella compacta (Umbelliferae), a Tropical Andean Cushion Plant". Biotropica 10 (1): 62–67. doi:10.2307/2388107. JSTOR 2388107. (subscription required)
- The Guinness Book of Records, 1999 edition, p. 102, ISBN 0-85112-070-9.
- BBC News - South Asia (2006-03-23). "'Clive of India's' tortoise dies". BBC News (BBC Online). Retrieved 2014-01-23.
- "Week In Science: 6/23 - 6/29". Seed.
- "Meet Jonathan, St Helena's 182-year-old giant tortoise". BBC News. 13 March 2014.
- "Harriet the Tortoise dies at 175". BBC News. 23 June 2006.
- "Timmy the tortoise dies aged 160". BBC News. April 7, 2004. Retrieved January 31, 2013.
- Bai, Nina (January 26, 2009). "111-Year-Old Reptile Becomes a Dad After Tumor Surgery". Discover. Retrieved January 31, 2013.
- Blic:Najstariji aligator na svetu živi u Beogradu
- "Winston's obscene parrot lives on". BBC News. January 19, 2004. Retrieved January 31, 2013.
- "Greater, the 83-year-old Adelaide Zoo flamingo, dies". The Australian. 31 January 2014. Retrieved 31 January 2014.
- Burgeson, John (January 26, 2010). "Beardsley Zoo's Andean condor, world's oldest, dead at 80". The Connecticut Post. Retrieved January 31, 2013.
- Schultz, Colin. "Wisdom the Albatross, the World’s Oldest Known Wild Bird, Has Yet Another Baby". Smithsonian.com. Retrieved 23 April 2014.
- Meier, Allison (4 March 2013). "Morbid Monday: The Split Head of Old Billy, the World's Oldest Horse". Atlas Obscura. Retrieved 17 November 2013.
- Guinness World Records 2010. Bantam; Reprint edition. 2010. p. 320. ISBN 978-0-553-59337-2.
The oldest cat ever was Creme Puff, who was born on August 3, 1967 and lived until August 6, 2005--38 years and 3 days in total.
- Tributes pour in after oldest polar bear dies in Winnipeg from CBC.ca; published November 18, 2008; retrieved September 27, 2014
- Robert Lloyd (March 16, 2012). "Television review: 'Frozen Planet' on Discovery Channel". Los Angeles Times.
- Graczyk, Michael (2009-03-25). "Scientists ID living coral as 4,265 years old". Associated Press. Archived from the original on 2009-04-01.
- McMurray, SE; Blum, JE; Pawlik, JR (2008). "Redwood of the reef : growth and age of the giant barrel sponge Xestospongia muta in the Florida Keys". Marine Biology 155 (2): 159–171. doi:10.1007/s00227-008-1014-z.
- "2,000 Year-old Deep-sea Black Corals call Gulf of Mexico Home". U.S. Geological Survey. March 30, 2011. Retrieved January 31, 2013.
- "AnAge entry for Cinachyra antarctica". Genomics.senescence.info. Retrieved 2010-03-17.
- Butler, Paul; AD Wanamaker; JD Scourse; CA Richardson; DJ Reynolds (2012). "Variability of marine climate on the North Icelandic Shelf in a 1357-year proxy archive based on growth increments in the bivalve Arctica islandica". Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 373: 141. doi:10.1016/j.palaeo.2012.01.016.
- Schöne; Fiebig, J; Pfeiffer, M; Gleb, R; Hickson, J; Johnson, A; Dreyer, W; Oschmann, W (2005). "Climate records from a bivalved Methuselah". Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 228 (228): 130–148. doi:10.1016/j.palaeo.2005.03.049.
- Koshihara, Komei (1966). "The Story of Hanako". NHK. Archived from the original on August 8, 2007.
- Barton, Laura (2007-04-12). "The Guardian". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 2009-04-11.
- Fenton, G.E; Short, S.A.; Ritz, D.A. (June 1991). "Age determination of orange roughy, Hoplostethus atlanticus (Pisces: Trachichthyidae) using 210 Pb: 226 Ra disequilibria". Marine Biology (Berlin/Heidelberg: Springer) 109 (2): 197–202. doi:10.1007/BF01319387. ISSN 0025-3162. Retrieved 2010-06-18.
- Alaska Science Forum (15 February 2001). "Bowhead Whales May Be the World's Oldest Mammals". Retrieved 2006-07-25.
- Ziuganov, V., San Miguel, E., Neves, R.J., Longa, A., Fernandez, C., Amaro, R., Beletsky, V., Popkovitch, E., Kaliuzhin, S., Johnson, T. (2000). "Life span variation of the freshwater pearlshell: a model species for testing longevity mechanisms in animals". Ambio ХХIX (2): 102–105. doi:10.1579/0044-7447-29.2.102.
- Зюганов В.В. (2004). "Арктические долгоживущие и южные короткоживущие моллюски жемчужницы как модель для изучения основ долголетия". Успехи геронтол. 14: 21–31.
- Helama S., Valovirta I. (2008). "The oldest recorded animal in Finland: ontogenetic age and growth in Margaritifera margaritifera (L. 1758) based on internal shell increments" (PDF). Memoranda Soc. Fauna Flora Fennica 84: 20–30.
- Ebert, TA; Southon, JR (2003). "Red sea urchins can live over 100 years: confirmation with A-bomb 14carbon — Strongylocentrotus franciscanus". Fishery Bulletin 101(4): 915-922.
- Sharmishtha, D.; Miles, L. L.; Barnabei, M.S.; Fisher, C. R. (2006). "The hydrocarbon seep tubeworm Lamellibrachia luymesi primarily eliminates sulfate and hydrogen ions across its roots to conserve energy and ensure sulfide supply". Journal of Experimental Biology 209: 3795-3805.
- Guidetti, R. & Jönsson, K.I. (2002). "Long-term anhydrobiotic survival in semi-terrestrial micrometazoans". Journal of Zoology 257 (2): 181–187. doi:10.1017/S095283690200078X.
- "Geoduck". BC Seafood Online. Archived from the original on September 17, 2011.
- MacDonald, Colin (August 21, 2004). "Cashing in on geoducks – once chowder fodder, the giant clam can fetch up to $24 a pop". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Archived from the original on 2004-10-11. (subscription required)
- "George the giant lobster liberated from restaurant". CNN. January 10, 2009. Retrieved January 31, 2013.
- "Wisconsin DNR catches and tags record 125-year-old sturgeon that's bigger than linebacker". Star Tribune. April 12, 2012. Retrieved January 31, 2013.
- David Harding (9 August 2014). "World's oldest eel dies aged 155, Sweden mourns". The New York Daily News. Retrieved 1 April 2015.