Oxygen is the necessary element to survive on Earth for all living creatures. A human body intakes around 550 liters of pure oxygen every day that would make usage of at least 200,750 liters of pure oxygen per year by a single human. Nevertheless, there are always extreme cases where science seems to have failed when it comes to search for life. No one can imagine life without oxygen, but there are few exceptional cases where animals survived without oxygen.
Let us jump to a list of the three rarest animals that break the principles of life and can live without oxygen. (Read also 10 Animal Species That Don’t Drink Water At All)
1. Henneguya Salminicola
In February 2020, a team of researchers from Tel Aviv University in Israel accidentally discovered a jellyfish-like parasite that spends its entire life without oxygen within a gut of salmon.
Henneguya Salminicola is a parasitical creature that lacks a mitochondrial genome whose functions are to convert food into energy that provides oxygen to the cells of multicellular organisms.
This microscopic animal is no new to the researchers as it belongs to the family of jellyfish and corals, but only recently scientists have been able to map its genome.
The way this parasite survived without oxygen has not been discovered, but scientists suggested that it could rely on the chemicals from the salmon that produce energy.
According to research, the creature can spend the rest of its life without oxygen in the stomach of a salmon, but it is not dangerous for its health.
Studying the parasite can help scientists understand alien life on other planets that need no oxygen to adapt a life. After tracking down the genome of the creature under a fluorescence microscope, no mitochondrial DNA was found.
2. Tiny Jellyfish from the Mediterranean Sea
In 2010, three new species of multicellular animals were discovered in the oxygen-free zone at the bottom of the Mediterranean sea. It was the first time scientists encounter the creatures that were spending their lives without oxygen.
It was a very rare chance to find such creatures, as there is only one such creature in million species. Yet, scientists were able to find animals that can live without oxygen.
Researchers from the Italian Polytechnic University of Marche stated that the animals not only survive without oxygen but also contain eggs. Although they were of microscopic level, measuring lesser than one millimeter.
These creatures are thriving life without oxygen in the most extreme places of the Mediterranean sea bottom, where sediments are extremely salty.
According to a biochemist from Comenius University in Slovakia, the ancestors of these animals for millions of years had an ability to live without oxygen for some part of their lives.
One of the most fascinating animals that ever found by scientists is Tardigrades (commonly known as water bears or moss piglets). They have the ability to survive under any conditions. Tardigrades were first discovered by a German zoologist in 1773. These microscopic creatures are almost indestructible with their tiny eight legs and hands with claws.
Water bears are not lesser than any sci-fiction superhuman character that can live just anywhere in any type of environment. Their little cute body can withstand the temperature as cold as -328 degrees Fahrenheit or as hot as 300 degrees F. They are comfortable to live in the sediments of deepest ocean-depths. They survived 10 days at low Earth orbit while being in the space vacuum and radiations.