Tardigrades – Superheroes of Nature

TV is swarming with superheroes these days, from the Flash and Arrow to the Agents of Shield and Daredevil. They’re everywhere, and even more are on the way.

It so happens that your house, your backyard, the little lake down in the park, almost any place, in fact, is also swarming with a very different kind of superhero…who is smaller than a poppy seed and able to perform incredible feats.

It is the nearly indestructible tardigrade, a tiny, cute little guy with eight pudgy little legs and some very sharp teeth. The tardigrade has made it through all the great extinctions of history and will probably outlive humans.

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Tardigrades can survive at close to absolute zero. They can survive near volcanic ducts under the sea. They can survive in the vacuum and cosmic rays of outer space. They can spend years in dehydration and come back to life. True, they only live about a year, but when they’re alive, they can’t be licked.

They are truly superheros of nature, the toughest critters on earth.

The BBC recently had a great article about them on its website. Check it out here.

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About drmar120

D. R. Martin is a writer and photographer based in Minnesota.
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