Tardigrades: 15 Fascinating Facts (Part 1)

escapistmagazine.com
escapistmagazine.com

Tardigrades are microscopic animals with bodies made up of segments. They are most commonly aquatic creatures but can be found in a multitude of different places such as Antarctic ice, deep in the sea, or on the highest mountains. There is a lot to learn about these creatures, so here is part one of our list of facts about them. Part two is coming to our page soon.

Number Fifteen: The Toughest Animal on Earth

The Tardigrade is known as the most resilient animal on the entire planet. They can survive intense temperatures and even radiation. These creatures can survive in extreme desert dryness, or at the bottom of the ocean.

Number Fourteen: Tardigrades Can Shift Form

These changes take place to ensure that the animal can live without water if necessary. They have the ability to dry themselves out completely and replace the water in their bodies with a special type of sugar, enabling them to go long stretches of time with nothing to drink.

Number Thirteen: One of Nature’s Smallest Creatures

This could contribute to their impressive survival skills since they are usually too small to be seen by predators. They are often smaller than a poppy seed.

Number Twelve: They Can Survive Space

A Swedish researcher named Ingemar Jonsson decided to test out how resilient Tardigrades really are, and launched some into space. Even when exposed to open space, including radiation, most of them survived.

Number Eleven: Discovered in 1773

A German pastor first found these creatures back in the 18th century. They were not named, however, until later in 1776 by an Italian biologist.

Number Ten: ‘Water Bear’ or ‘Moss Piglet’

These are a couple of the names the Tardigrade goes by. They have eight legs and each one is equipped with claws like that of a bear, and they are nicknamed “moss piglets” because they also live in moss at times.

Number Nine: Over One Thousand Different Types

More than 1100 species of Tardigrades have been discovered since they were initially found in 1773. We hope you learned something from this informative article about nature’s most resilient animal. Check back for part two of the list, coming soon.

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