If we’re being totally honest, there are a lot of animals and insects and creepy-crawlies in the world that can do some impressive but completely weird stuff. But as someone who prefers to eat every 3-4 hours, the ones that go literal years without consuming a meal might be the most strange to me.
If you’re curious which species out there can last the absolute longest without any sustenance at all, here are 10 that just might blow your mind.
10. Cats (Two Weeks)
This kind of surprised me, but it’s basically the same as a human.
As long as a cat is healthy and well-hydrated, they can survive about two weeks without food.
9. Great White Shark (Three Months)
Great white sharks eat around 11 tons of food a year, but a single meal could be large enough to tide them over for three months at a time.
8. Emperor Penguin (Three Months)
Male emperor penguins are dads of the year – they protect their eggs for three months in the extreme cold while their partners go in search of food.
7. Humpback Whale (Six Months)
These whales have giant blubber stores of fat they can use to tide them over during the leaner winter months.
6. Ball Python (Six Months)
Ball pythons have a low metabolism and conserve energy very well.
That conserved energy helps them survive for months on a single meal.
5. Galapagos Tortoise (One Year)
These tortoises have large internal storage areas for water, and like the python, have a slow metabolism.
They would be okay for a year without food.
4. Scorpion (One Year)
A typical meal is about 1/3 of a scorpion’s body weight, and digesting it slows down their metabolism and provides nutrition that can last up to a year.
3. Burrowing Frog (One Year)
These cool little frogs can stay buried in the mud for a year without eating – they also go through a period of torpor after a meal (sort of like hibernating).
2. Crocodile (Three Years)
You might think crocs eat all the time, but they don’t have to – they can stay still for long periods of time, which helps them conserve enough energy to last three years without a meal (if they have to).
1. Tardigrade (Thirty Years)
This one takes the cake – these weird little dudes go into a state called cryptobiosis, in which their metabolism lowers to 0.01% of their normal rate, and they can also survive on an extremely low water content.
Some of these really surprised me!
Which one shocked you the most? Confessions in the comments!