I love learning random facts about random people, places, and things, so this will be a new segment where I share cool and hip information.
Today’s feature is…. *drum roll*
Tardigrade or “Slow stepper”: Water bears aka Moss piglets
The first time I saw this photo, I thought for certain someone invented and Photoshopped a fictional new species. But THEY’RE REAL.
- First discovered by German pastor Johann August Ephraim Goeze in 1773
- Go without food or water for potentially 30+ yrs
- Dry to <%3 water make up, then rehydrate, forage, and reproduce
- Withstand extreme temperature ranges from -458 degrees fahrenheit, or -272 Celsius, to 300 degrees fahrenheit, or 150 C
- Can withstand vacuum of open space and solar radiation combined for at least 10 days.
- Can withstand 6,000 atmospheres, such as the deepest known part of earth, the Mariana Trench
- Undergoes chemobiosis– cryptobiotic response = a sort of dormant state of halting all processes typical of life= reproduction, oxygen deficiency, metabolic processes
- NOT extremophiles because risk of death is in direct correlation with increased length of exposure to extreme environments
As you can see, it has six legs and looks hella funky and kind of cute. Pretty inspirational and amazing how tiny but resilient they are!
What is your favorite rare or unconventional animal?