The diversity of nature has been witnessed in the innumerable living beings found in it, both in the plant kingdom as well as animal kingdom. Each of the species differs in characteristics and life spans, with some living for centuries and others just a few hours.
Here us a list of top 10 shortest living animals on the earth:
10. Domestic Rabbits
With the life span of only 8 to 12 years, the domesticated rabbits make it on this list and the main diseases which cause their death are uterine cancer and fat deposits, with females being at greater risk. These cute little animals need a great deal of care and good feeding to maximize their survival.
9. Guinea Pigs
Next on this list of top 10 shortest living animals on the earth are the South African natives guinea pigs, which have live for a period of 4 years on an average. These animals too require a good deal of medical care as they are susceptible to diseases like bronchitis, bumble foot and scurvy.
8. Mosquito Fish
Mosquito fish is a common fresh water fish found in USA and with a life span of 2 years on an average, it qualifies for a place on this list. The females outlive the males of the species in general and also the ones which are domesticated live longer than those which are found in saline waters.
A species of chameleons called the Panther Chameleon survives for a period of a year, which makes it the shortest lives reptile on the planet. Found in the northern and eastern regions of Madagascar, these creatures are known for their rapid mating habits, which is an adaptation for their short life span. They also adapt to the surroundings by changing color very quickly. Chameleons feed on small insects like worms and crickets.
6. House Mouse
Sharing the same spot with chameleons is the house mouse, which too lives for a year on an average. Rapid breeding is a distinctive feature of this animal, which again is an adaptation to its short living period. The primary survival issue for the animal is the health issues faced by it, though predators may also shorten their life span.
5. Dragon Fly
Dragon flies are small and vibrant looking insects, which hardly live for a period of 4 months, as they become prey to birds, frogs, lizards and spiders. They also cannot bear the harsh climatic conditions such as those faced in the cold climate. As many as 5000 species of the insect are found in the world.
One of the most common insects found on the earth is the housefly and it is one of the shortest living too, which is limited to a period of 4 weeks in all. The ones which live in human colonies survive longer than the ones which are native to the wild. An adaptation of this insect to cover its short lifespan is its swift reproduction, with the females laying as many as a thousand eggs in its lifespan.
3. Drone Ants
Featuring next on the list of top 10 shortest living animals on the earth are the drone ants or male ants, which live for only 3 weeks. These ants are not good workers and usually die after they mate with females, which is the main rle they play within the ant colonies.
The marine micro organisms called Gastrotrichs come next on this list, with an average life cycle of just 3 days. These transparent creatures are very tiny, reaching only 3 mm in size and get attached to other underwater creatures with special adhesive tubes on their body. The creature has both male as well as female reproductive organs.
The shortest living animal on the earth are the mayflies, which survive for only 24 hours and earns them the name of one-day insects. Most of them live only up to the nymph stage as they die on the same day and the main purpose of their life is only and only reproduction. As many as 2500 species of mayflies are found in the world.
It may be hard to believe so, but nature actually has such animals which live only for a day but are found in abundance on the earth.