If the age of the universe is traced back to its origin, we’d possibly have no clear idea about it, but as far as scientists assume, it goes beyond billions of years, and the vastness of the whole universe extends far beyond the deepest thinking of human beings. A very very small segment of which is our solar system and that too isn’t actually completely known about. The existence of life has been found on Earth only, but there is a great scope for it to exist somewhere else too, knowing about which is still a distant dream but some of the greatest minds have consistently been working on unraveling it. But when it comes to our planet, do you know about the oldest animal species on Earth?
There are millions and millions of species residing on our planet as of today and sadly, we don’t know about even half of them. Every now and then, a new discovery makes its way to the public where scientists have found something new and unusual. But, with our advanced technology and more advance human brains, we have been able to track the oldest animal species on Earth.
Also Read: Which are the 5 Rare Bird Species Found in India that are Struggling for Existence?
Keep on reading to know more about them.
1. Ctenophores (Comb Jellies)
A few years ago, it was believed that Sponges were the first actual animals on this planet, however, new studies show that Ctenophores are possibly the first true animal species and the oldest animal species on Earth. In a study proven by The National Institute of Health, it has been shown that nearly half of known disease genes that are present in humans are also present in Comb Jellies. Their existence has been expected to have originated nearly 700 Million years ago.
They are expected to be nearly 600 Million Years old and are still believed to be the first-ever true animal species of Earth by many, though recent researches have proved Ctenophores to be the oldest ones. They are mainly found in marine water. Their species range from about 5000-10000 different ones.
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They are the oldest animal on Earth with multi organs and are known to have existed about 500 Million years earlier. Studies from the year 2011, have proved that Jellyfish aren’t the simple creatures we presume, but far more complex than we actually think. More detailed studies on them are consistently been arranged and soon we’ll more about them than ever. They also exist mainly in marine waters.
4. Velvet Worms
Originally named Onychophora, Velvet Worms are supposed to have been in existence for nearly 490 Million years. It is their velvety texture that has given it the nickname. They are closely related to arthropods but unlike them, they don’t have a hard exoskeleton and their skin too is water repellent, and they have a large number of pairs of feet.
They have been the longest-living cephalopods which are basically the group of octopuses, cuttlefish, and squids. Their spirally chambered shells make them easily recognizable and distinguished from others. Out of a total discovered 2500 species through fossils, only six exist to date. They too are found to have originated nearly 500 Million years ago and mainly found in Indo Pacific seas.
6. Horseshoe Crab
Found to have been in existence for nearly 450 Million Years, Horseshoe crabs haven’t evolved much from their previously found fossils, which kind of looked like aliens which makes them another one of the oldest animal species on Earth. They are mainly found in ocean waters and on soft sands or mud bottoms.
Earlier, they were thought to be extinct, until one species was found in 1938, and studying which it has been found that they existed nearly 360 Million years ago. Recently, scientists have reported the genome sequencing of this animal, a detailed study would provide the idea of how they would have evolved up to this day and it is definitely exciting for people who are always on the lookout for distinct species and animals on Earth.
So, these were the oldest animal species on Earth, which have been found to exist to date. Though, a series of many such creatures haven’t been discovered as nearly 95% of the ocean is still isn’t mapped, so we can probably expect much older animal species to exist too in the future.
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