Saturday, December 1, 2012

Oldest living Animal on this Planet !!

Last time I went to Meerut it was on Diwali for a day, After Pooja I placed Diyas in and outside my home. Instead of going for burning Fire Crackers and stuff I went inside my home. As I had to leave early morning next day I packed my bag and had chatted with my Cousin. Then at around 10:30 my friends came looking after me, I had to go outside now by this time they already had finished Diwali Celebrations. As we were having discussions about our life outside house of one of my Friend I suddenly asked about his Dog "Roger" as I couldn't see it today, other friend told me he is no more.

Roger must have been 13 years old, he was of Bhutani  breed with long and bushy hair. I remember when I first saw him in 2003 he was very young and agile, infact before him I was very skeptical and afraid of Dogs but then as you spend time with them you get to know how harmless they are. In 2011 I  remembered one of his eyes became non functional and he looked pretty old at that time. Its quite ironic how in 12 years of age a Dog becomes Old and a men of his age is still in his Childhood.

Having a curious mind I started thinking about how long a living creature could live, have heard lots of stories about Tortoises that they can live for generations. So I started googling about the Oldest animal on this planet and soon I zeroed in on Jonathan the Tortoise.

Jonathan is about staggering 180 years in age at present, imagine he was born before Mahatma Gandhi and still living. My GrandFather was born in 1931 and he is no more now[sadly]

Jonathan lives in Saint Helena island and it is known that he was born in Seychelles from where he was brought to Saint Helena islands in 1882 when he was already 50 years in age. It is known that Napoleon was exiled here at Saint Helena Island in 1815.

In above picture a Boer war prisoner is standing alongside a Tortoise in Saint Helena Island and picture was clicked around 1900. This picture came into light when someone got it from Boer war picture archives, after some examination it was confirmed that the Tortoise in this picture was Jonathan. As the picture was clicked in 1900 so it could be made that he is around 180 years in age at present making him the oldest living animal on planet earth.

Having lived so long it is said Jonathan is still active however one of his eyes have stopped working. He still regularly mates with three female Tortoise present on the island. Being the oldest animal in world he gets a celebrity status on the Island. There have been counts that Tortoises more than the age of Jonathan have lived before,some say Tortoise could live around 250 years ,that is some figure I must say.

Now another questions arises why Tortoise live for so long about double the age of a human being. We all know they are very slow moving animal and answer to this question somewhat lies in this very fact. Scientists say lower the metabolism rate higher would be the living age. At higher metabolic rate you need to burn more amount of energy to maintain the activity which transponds to lower age. Hence if you have lower metabolic rate you will waste less amount of energy and your longevity increases so is the case with Tortoises.

Now you know what to do if one wants to live long - be a lazy person and conserve your energy haha :)

The Telegraph 
The Guardian 

Pictures courtesy Tripadvisor and Dailymail .

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