TurbulentFizz (turbulentfizz) wrote in wtf_nature,

The Fantastic Olm

I don't think this guy's been done before, I looked 200 pages back and I haven't seen it! So here we go.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I present to you, the Olm:

About the Incredible Olm:

"Called the "living fossil" because it is one of the oldest species in the world and because it still has most of its original characteristics, Olm salamander is definitely the oddest of underground creatures. It is an amphibian that lives off micro-organisms and other cave-dwelling species and is the number one underground predator thanks to its size (up to 35 cm long)."

The Olm can live from 80 to 100 years, and doesn't need to eat excepting every 8-10 years. It is truly a wacky, weird animal.

"In fact, this animal has fascinated scientists and the common man for centuries. It has some peculiar features and still shows remnaints from past evolutionary steps. Charles Darwin was fascinated by this creature and it’s written about in chapter 5 of his book “The Origin of Species: Effects of Use and Disuse. He calles them “wrecks of ancient life”."

"It’s metabolism is also extremely slow and it’s believed that olms can be up to 100 years old. It’s also been shown that they can go on without food for six years! According to wikipedia there’s been one reported case in which an olm was placed in a jar in a refrigerator for more than a decade. It was reportedly still alive when finally removed, though with severe damage to its internal organs, including the reabsorption of its own digestive tract for sustenance."

And so, in the darkness, the Olm sits, and waits. For what, who knows? But he'll be waiting there, hardly eating, hardly moving, for the next one hundred years.

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