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10 Ancient Animals in the World Still Alive Today

ancient animals in the world

Starting from Komodo, Cassowary, and Babirusa, these are the ancient animals in the world that are still alive today.

Ancient Animals in the World – When talking about prehistoric or ancient animals, we immediately think of dinosaurs.

This giant reptile is so popular that it has even been adapted for film and animation. However, dinosaurs can only be found in pictures or animations because these ancient animals are already extinct.

But dinosaurs are not the only ancient animals that lived on Earth. There are still many ancient animals in the world. In fact, some of them are still alive today. Come join and learn about various ancient animals that are still alive today!

Ancient Animals in the Living World

1. Whale Shark

Whale sharks, which live in warm tropical waters, are considered the largest fish in the world. Can live up to 70 years, who would have thought that this type of large fish has been on earth for 60 million years, making it one of the oldest animals still alive today.

You can find ancient animals in the world in Indonesian waters. Whale sharks in Indonesia can be seen in National Parks Wakatobi, Lembata waters, Cenderawasih Bay, and Misool. No need to panic because this old animal is still alive and eating Plankton.

2. Kasuari

The cassowary is a flightless bird with unique characteristics. It is one of the largest bird species in the world today.

This bird, which originates from the tropical forests of Australia and Southeast Asia, is estimated to have lived on Earth for 60 million years. In fact, its characteristics are said to be similar to dinosaurs."Velociraptor".

This often leads to the conclusion that these ancient animals that are still alive are related to dinosaurs. However, this has not yet been proven.

In Indonesia, apart from zoos, ancient animals in the world can still be found in the forests of Papua.

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3. Chambered Nautilus

Next is the Chambered Nautilus, an ancient animal from another world that still lives, precisely in the seas of Australia and Indonesia. The existence of this ancient animal that is still alive is considered very rare, the Monterey Bay Aquarium in California is the only breeding facility.

chambered nautilus
Chambered Nautilus (Source: Thoughtco)

The animal fossil thought to be the ancestor of this ancient animal is 500 million years old, and the comparison between this fossil and the Nautilus, which is still alive today, is very similar, implying that they are the same ancient species and lived hundreds to millions of years ago.

4. Tapirs

The next ancient animal in the world that is still alive is the Tapir, a herbivorous species that is found throughout the earth, including Indonesia.

Tapirs, which have different shapes and live in forest areas on river banks, are thought to have evolved during the Miocene era, around 23 million years ago.

In Indonesia, this ancient animal that is still alive can only be found on the island of Sumatra, namely in the southern part of Lake Toba in North Sumatra, near Lampung Province.

However, according to the latest archaeological data, tapirs, scientifically known as Tapirus indicus, thrived in Kalimantan at least 1.500 years ago. Tapirs are now only found in Asia, Central America and South America.

5. Chinese Giant Salamander

Furthermore, the Chinese Giant Salamander is thought to have existed on Earth since 170 million years ago and is an ancient animal in other parts of the world that is still alive today.

This animal is thought to have existed when dinosaurs were still on Earth. The largest amphibian in the world was previously found in cold mountain rivers in China. Unfortunately, poaching makes these old animals difficult to detect in the wild.

6. Horseshoe Crab

The next surviving ancient animal in the world, which is considered one of the oldest animals on the planet, is known to have existed since the Ordovician era, around 445 million years ago.

This crab species has a very unique shape, it can still be found in various parts of the world, including Indonesian waters.

7. Turtle

Furthermore, turtles are found in all waters of the world. Turtles have been around since the end of the Jurassic period (145-208 million years ago), making them the same age as dinosaurs. At that time, Archelon with a body length of six meters and Cimochelys swam in the ancient sea like today's turtles.

Turtles (Source: See Turtles)

Turtles have a pair of front legs shaped like paddle legs, which allows them to swim in water. Even though they spend their entire lives in water, animals from the Vertebrate group, class Reptilia, occasionally have to rise to the surface of the water to breathe.

That's because turtles breathe through their lungs. Turtles usually move long distances in a short time. A journey of 3.000 kilometers can be completed in 58-73 days.

So, turtles experience varying egg-laying cycles, ranging from once every 2 to 8 years. Male turtles spend their entire lives at sea, while female turtles periodically come ashore to deposit their eggs.

Female turtles prefer sandy beaches free from humans, noise and light to lay their eggs. When about to lay eggs, disturbances in the form of light or sound can cause the turtle to give up and return to the sea.

Turtles use Earth Magnetism to return to their hometown when they are still hatchlings and return when they are adults to lay eggs.

8. Coelacanths

Initially, this ancient animal was thought to have become extinct around 66 million years ago at the end of the Cretaceous Period. At that time, the only evidence of its existence was in the form of fossils.

The oldest fossil of this prehistoric fish is estimated to be more than 410 million years old. However, by 1938, the West Indian Ocean Coelacanth had been found in the Comoros, Kenya, Tanzania, Mozambique, Madagascar, the Isimangaliso Wetland Park, and off the South Coast of Kwazulu-Natal, South Africa. Since then, many other species have been discovered.

Then, in 1999, another coelacanth animal was found living in Manado waters, North Sulawesi. This discovery convinced the world that the coelacanth is an ancient animal in the world that still exists today, although in small numbers.

9. Pig Deer

Another living ancient mammal found in Indonesia is the Pig Deer which is classified as rare and protected. This burba mammal has a pig-like appearance and has large tusks that grow curved upwards.

Paintings showing this animal found in ancient caves provide evidence that it has existed since ancient times. This image is thought to have appeared around 35.000 years ago.

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10 Komodo

The Komodo dragon is one of the most famous living ancient animals on this list. A large lizard native to Komodo Island and a number of nearby islands in the Nusa Tenggara archipelago, this ancient animal in the world is said to have existed 4 million years ago.

This is supported by the discovery of Komodo dragon fossils in eastern Australia which are estimated to be 4 million years old. To observe ancient animals still living in their natural habitat, go to the Komodo National Park which was created specifically to protect rare animals and their habitat.

Who would have thought that the various creatures we see today were ancient animals that have existed on Earth for millions of years? Travela can find some of these ancient animals in Indonesia.

In fact, some ancient animals that are still alive are now threatened with extinction, and various efforts have been made to protect them. Hopefully the ancient animals in this world will still be preserved.


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