Which animal lives longest? Giant tortoises often live more than 100 years, but they aren't the longest-living animal its the sponge, below left (Smithsonian.com)
Which animal lives longest?
Lexile

Sticking with recorded history, the answer might surprise you. Its not elephants, which live for about 30 or 40 years. Its not giant tortoises either, even though they often ripen to be well over 100 years old. Its not even that record-breaking, 507-year-old Arctic clam named Ming.

Nope, the longest-living animal in the world is a sponge. Sponges are among the simplest animals on the planet headless, armless and completely void of internal organs. But theyre still technically animals. And the glass sponge can live for 15,000 years.

The only other animal that might give it a run for its money is the immortal jellyfish. Under normal circumstances it lives and dies just like any other jellyfish. But put it under extreme stress and guess what? It ages backwards!

It transforms all of its adult cells into a younger state. And it can do this de-aging thing over and over again. Kind of makes the oldest human a 122-year-old French woman who was named Jeanne seem downright young, doesnt it?

Critical thinking challenge: Is there any connection between a 100-year-old tortoise and a 100-year-old human?

Filed Under:  
Assigned 40 times


COMMENTS (141)
  • ksnow420
    5/15/2014 - 08:39 a.m.

    According to the article a sponge is the longest living creature in the world . The glass sponge can live for 15,000 years. It can transform all of it's adult cells into younger ones. I think this is very interesting that a sponge is the longest living creature alive.

  • 1234Caitlin
    5/15/2014 - 08:40 a.m.

    No, the on.y thing I think that is a connection would be that they are both 100 yrs old... Other than that, I don't think so..... XD

  • ah07pink
    5/15/2014 - 08:41 a.m.

    I never really thought about animals like which one lives longer but that is pretty amazing how the tortoise can live to be 100 years old some humans on earth can't live to 100 years old so it's pretty cool how the tortoise lived to be 100 years old.

  • tsowell12
    5/15/2014 - 10:08 a.m.

    According to the article a sponge is the longest living creature in the world . The glass sponge can live for 15,000 years. It can transform all of it's adult cells into younger ones. I think this is very interesting that a sponge is the longest living creature alive.

  • AmberMadison
    5/15/2014 - 10:28 a.m.

    I never thought about which animal lives the longest but if i did i would think it would be a tortoise , but surprisingly its a clam ! That's very surprising that it lived to be 507 years old.

    • adominguez-gom
      2/24/2016 - 04:27 p.m.

      I never thought about clams living up to that age but now I think clams are pretty cool!

  • anessiacurrie
    5/15/2014 - 11:00 a.m.

    They're not the oldest record breaking in the whole world.There's humans and animals that live longer than 100 years old.There are some humans and animals that lives past 101 years old and longer.

  • jojogarcia
    5/15/2014 - 11:07 a.m.

    I don't think their is any connection because most humans don't live to be 100 years old. I think that it is very cool that a sponge can live that long by turning all its adult cells to young cells.

  • dorianb
    5/15/2014 - 11:30 a.m.

    that's cool i wanna stay a live into 500 hinders years old that will be cool but u will look really old and then u will have someone take care of you

  • owenb7102
    5/15/2014 - 12:06 p.m.

    That's amazing for a jellyfish to act like that in stress, and I thought that nothing could live over 100 years old and yet there is.

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT