1. Biggest virus - The Pithovirus measures 1.5 micrometers long. There is argument about whether or not a virus is a living thing...some scientists say yes while others say no. But the Pithovirus is 50 percent bigger than the previous record holder. But don't worry that this giant among viruses might affect you. They only preys on amoebas which are only slightly bigger themselves. Whew!
2. Speaking of amoebas...the largest one is the Giant Amoeba measuring 3 millimeters long. So what's the genus name attached to to this giant amoeba? It's called "Chaos" which "presumably refers to this single-celled organism's constant undulations, as well as the fact that it harbors literally hundreds of separate nuclei in its cytoplasm.
3. The biggest insect - The Goliath Beetle weighs a whopping 3-4 ounces, making it the frog's equivalent to a Big Mac. it is never seen outside of the tropical forests in Africa. An interesting note, this insect is twice as large as a larva than it is as a full-grown adult.
4. Next on the list...the one I've most interested in...is the biggest amphibian. The Goliath Frog of west-central Africa weighs in at five pounds, on average. But he isn't the largest frog that ever lived. That title belongs to the 10-pound "Devil Frog" of late Cretaceous Madagascar. Holy Moly! (Goliath sure seems like a popular name for over-sized creatures, doesn't it?)
5. The biggest arthropod - The Japanese Spider Crab check in at 25 pounds. This crab is truly enormous with enormously long legs which can grow up to 6 feet in length. Although it was a prized delicacy in Japan, it has "migrated" off most menus due to pressure from conservationists.
6. The biggest flowering plant - The Rafflesia weighs 25 pounds. It is known as the "corpse flower" and is not something you probably want to grow in your backyard flower garden. Why it is called the corpse flower? It's 3-foot wide blossoms tend to spell like rotting flesh, which attracts insects that help spread its pollen. Nope. I don't want to smell one.
7. The largest sponge - The Giant Barrel Sponge can be 6 feet high. Not only is it the largest living sponge today, it is also the longest-living invertebrate animals on earth with some individuals living for 1,000 years!
8. The largest jelly fish - The 6-foot-diameter bell belongs to the Lion's Mane jellyfish. its tentacles can exceed 100-feet. This jellyfish is to other jellyfish what the blue whale is to other cetaceans. Thankfully, given it's giant size, it isn't all that poisonous. A healthy human can survive its sting. "It also serves an important ecological function, as various fish and crustaceans cluster under its huge bell."
9. The biggest flying bird - The Kori Bustard weighs an impressive 40 pounds. These birds push against the limits of aerodynamics which is why they aren't the most graceful winged creatures when they take off. The are unable to flap their wings for more than a few minutes at a time. The Kori Bustard will fly, briefly, when threatened, but prefers to spend most of its time on the ground. Not surprisingly, these birds eat pretty much anything that moves. It's habitat is the southern portion of Africa.
10. The Biggest Snake title goes to The Green Anaconda. These slithering beauties can up to 500 pounds. native to South America, these snakes can obtain a length of 15 feet. YIKES!
I hope you've enjoyed learning about these creature. And there are many others that might interest you as well. If you'd like to know more, please see the citation under today's photo.
Have a great weekend, everyone. I invite you all back here on Monday. Stay safe and I wish you peace.