Meet the Blue Whale: The Largest Animal in the World
Without exception, the largest living animal in the world is the blue whale. It can grow up to 32.9 meters or 108 feet long, and weigh 172 metric tons or 190 short tons. The heaviest blue whale ever measured weighed 190 tons or 210 short tons.
Blue whales almost became extinct due to massive hunting but this was stopped due to conservation efforts. Their numbers have gradually risen back up since 1966. By 2002, there were an estimated 5,000 to 12,000 blue whales in the wild. More recent studies suggest the number may be significantly higher. But the blue whale population today is still very far from what it used to be before commercial whaling, when they numbered almost 240,000 in the Antarctic alone.
Sauropod: The Largest Extinct Animal
One member of the sauropod is the supersaurus. It is believed to be as much as 33 to 34 meters long, or 108 to 112 feet. The supersaurus weighed 35 to 40 tons.
Elephant: The Largest Animal on Land
Blue whales may be the biggest of all, but they are found only on water. On land the largest animal of them all is the African Bush elephant. Female elephants can get as long as 79 to 89 feet and weigh more than 100 tons. The largest male on record weighed 13 ½ tons, was 10.6 meters long and 4.2 meters tall.
Bear: The Largest Carnivore Animal
Among carnivores, polar bears and brown bears rule. Adult male polar bears can weigh as much as 350 go 680 kilograms or 770 to 1,500 pounds. The largest type of brown bear, the Kodiak bear, is very close to the polar bear in size and weight. It is not surprising given that they are very closely related. The polar bear evolved to adapt exclusively to its icy environment.
Saltwater Crocodile: The Largest Reptile
Among reptiles, the biggest is the saltwater crocodile. It thrives in the swamps, rivers and estuaries of Southeast Asia, eastern India and Australia. The saltwater crocodile can grow up to 6.3 meters long and 1,900 kilograms heavy.
Giraffe: The Tallest Animal
In terms of height, the giraffe has no rival. The tallest giraffe ever recorded was a male that stood 6 meters or 20 feet high. The giraffe is a native inhabitant of Central and South Africa. Giraffes are herbivores and are prey to none except lions.
Ostrich: The Largest Bird
The ostrich is both the tallest and the heaviest of all living birds. It measures 2.7 meters tall and weighs 156 kilograms.