Animal Life Lengths

Animal lifespans are not so easy to figure out. Animals in the wild usually live shorter lives than they potentially could, because of predation, accidents and other factors. For that reason, the maximum lifespans are usually from animals in zoos. For example, Snooty the manatee died recently at an aquarium in Sarasota, Florida, at age 69. Dugongs, an Asian relative of manatees, can live to at least 73. The oldest known horse, Old Billy, lived in England 1760-1822, reaching the age of 62. Asian elephants have lived to 86. A male Sulfer Crested Cockatoo reached past 80. European brown bears have reached 47. The oldest Aldabra tortoises live well past 100. The life expectancy of marine mammals is extremely difficult to measure, but recent estimates of bowhead whales show them living past 200. The vertebrate with the longest known life expectancy is the Greenland Shark, known to live almost 300 years and thought to reach 500 years old. The shark doesn’t reach sexual maturity until it is a century old.

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