The Biggest and Largest Animals in God's Green Earth!
Our culture is fascinated by the biggest and the best of anything. Fast food restaurants have recognized this for years, which is why they sell a Whopper, Quarter Pounder, or a Big Mac, all things signifying that it is big. So it only seems fitting that we would also find the largest animals fascinating as well. So here is a short list of some of the biggest animals in the world; from the longest jellyfish to the animal with the largest mouth and all those in between.
What Is the Biggest Whale in the World?
Largest Animal - The Blue Whale
- The Blue Whale is the largest animal averaging 110 feet or 22 meters long.
- It also weighs an enormous 209 tons.
- The blue whale is actually believed to be the largest animal that has ever existed beating out even the largest dinosaur.
- This whale has a blowhole at the top of its body. When it, breathes it raises its blowhole further out of the water than any other whale.
- They can travel 31 miles per hour which is equal to 50 kilometers.
- Despite its massive size, the whale has a narrow throat. Well, narrow in comparison to its body. It can only swallow something that is more narrow than a beach ball. Despite the small throat, its mouth can hold up to 90 metric tons of food and water.
- At birth, they weigh equal to a grown hippopotamus at around 6000 pounds which is around 2700 kilograms.
- For the first several months of a whale's life, it needs 100 gallons of milk a day to survive.
Longest Animal - Arctic Lion's Mane Jellyfish
- A Lion's Mane Jellyfish is the largest jellyfish known to mankind.
- It is also the longest animal at 200 feet long.
- Its bell can reach eight feet across, which is equal to 2.5 kilometers.
- Despite its long tentacles, it's usually not a deadly sting, although very painful.
- They usually stay relatively close to the surface.
- The deepest it usually ventures is around 20 meters deep.
- They can travel great distances due to the ocean currents, but also can pulsate to move forward as well.
- The color of a Lion's Mane Jellyfish is largely determined by its size. Larger Lion's Mane Jellyfish is going to be a dark purplish in color, whereas smaller ones will have more of an orange tint to their body.
A Real Ostrich Egg
Largest Bird Egg - Ostrich Egg
Once an ostrich is around two to four years old, they will begin laying fertilized eggs in a nest which is basically a pit that is one to two feet deep and 9.8 feet wide. It is a communal nest that numerous female ostriches use, and the dominant ostrich lays her eggs first. If there are is an abundance of eggs, she will discard eggs from the weaker ostriches.
- Although the eggs are the largest bird eggs, they are the smallest eggs in comparison to the bird's body.
- The incubation period is around 35-45 days long.
- The egg itself usually is 5.9 inches long and 5.1 inches wide and about 3.1 pounds.
- The image to the right shows how big the egg is in comparison to a human hand.
Largest Clam - Giant Clam
- Giant Clams can measure longer than four feet across and weigh more than 441 pounds or 200 kilograms.
- In the wild, a giant clam can live as long as 100 years old or more.
- The largest giant clam that has ever been found was measured as 53.9 inches, which is equal to 137 centimeters. It was discovered in Sumatra in 1817 and weighed 734 pounds, which is equal to 250 kilometers. A Northern Ireland museum has this giant clam on display.
- The development is the most fascinating part of a giant shell. After an egg is laid, it floats in the water for twelve hours until the egg hatches at which time the larva will develop a chalk shell. Soon it will develop a "foot" that allows it to travel across the bottom of the sea. It is actually able to search for a habitat that is best suited for it. Most young clams die soon after this stage.
Largest Mouth on Land Animal - Hippopotamus
- Although the hippopotamus is beaten out by the Savanna Elephant as the largest land animal, it does have the largest mouth of any land animal.
- The mouth can open a full 180 degrees!
- They usually only open their mouth when they are feeling threatened.
- Hippos are semi-aquatic. The adult hippo can spend up to 3-5 minutes underwater before they need to come up to take a breath. Young ones may need to take a breath as soon as two minutes of being under water. Although they do not need to be awake to come out of the water.
- Hippos can actually fall asleep underwater and come up to breath without waking.
- They are extremely aggressive, and are the third largest land animal, beat out by both the elephant and the rhinoceros.
Largest Land Animal: The Savanna Elephant
- The Savanna elephants are the largest elephants, as well as the largest land animal on earth. They are one of the two types of African elephants.
- All African elephants have concave backs as well as ears that are generally larger than Asian elephants.
- The males are bigger than the females. For instance, the male usually is between 10 and 13 feet high measured at the shoulders. They usually weigh between 7,700 and 26,000 pounds. The female is smaller at about 9.8 feet tall.
- In 1965, the largest Savanna Elephant was shot in Angola. He was recorded as weighing 27,060 pounds and standing 13.8 feet high and weighed 8 tons. The remains can be found in Washington, DC at the National Museum of Natural History.
- For its large size, you can imagine it has a very hefty diet. It requires at least 190 liters of water every day and eats 225 kilograms of vegetation, which it never fully digests.
Giant Golden-crowned Flying Fox
- The Giant Golden-crowned Flying Fox wins the title of being the largest bat in the world with a wingspan of 5 feet or 1.5 meters!
- They are named because their face looks much like a fox!
- They are an endangered animal and is extremely close to extinction due to poachers.
- They mainly live in rainforests and caves in the Philipines.
- They are shy animals and do not live in areas where humans have inhabited. As more areas become inhabited by people, there are fewer places for the flying fox to live.
© 2010 Angela Michelle Schultz