The lungfish is one of the oldest species living today. Its lineage traces directly to a species alive right after the breakup of Pangaea--which Wikipedia tells us was the original super-continent and not, as we have for years assumed, some sort of tragically disbanded Dinosaur Speedmetal group.
Nor is there a hipster version.
Great! So How Do I Kill It?
The lungfish--as you may have cleverly guessed by the inclusion of the "fish" descriptor--is an aquatic creature. But unlike most aquatic creatures, they have learned to endure the occasional prolonged dry spell, with one branch of the family even doing so yearly. They burrow themselves deep down into the ground and secrete a mucous substance around them--like a snot cocoon (hope you're not reading this at breakfast time. Still want that key lime yogurt?)--which preserves the moisture in their bodies. Their metabolic rate then drops into a state of aestivation, allowing them to go without nutrients for very long periods of time.
Just like the Cracked staff.
A science lab in East Africa witnessed this phenomena firsthand when a lungfish, while being transported in an air-tight metal cylinder full of mud (a method of travel a lungfish could easily survive for a brief time), became lost during the trip. When they finally recovered it after six months of being shipped from lab to lab, the mud in the cylinder had long since hardened and the air had been depleted, basically burying the poor thing alive.
"Shit, we didn't really think this through."
Which was totally cool with the lungfish; after the team added a little water, it popped right back to life -- perfectly fine in every respect.
They buried it alive without air or moisture for six months and couldn't kill it. If Hollywood has taught us anything, that's enough motivation for the lungfish to don a sinister cloak and start killing teenagers with a hacksaw.
Scientists have a habit of giving animals names that take certain liberties (for example, they might see that something has "skin" and call it a bear, because bears also have skin,) but this time science was telling us the facts straight up: Immortal jellyfish do not die. Ever.
Great! So How Do I Kill It?
The immortal jellyfish are born, develop and reach full maturity like any other gelatinous spawn of the ocean. However, instead of going to the Great Barrier Reef in the sky at the end of life, they simply revert back to a polyp (that's fancy Water Science talk for "baby"). In theory this could go on forever. Right now you're probably feeling a little gypped by this entry: "In theory? Lame! I guess it was unreasonable of me to expect something on Earth to literally live forever, though."
Nah, we're just fucking with you: They're totally immortal, which is resulting in a giant influx in the jellyfish population. Millions of years ago, the first of these jellyfish was born, and somewhere in the ocean it's still living today.
"Get out of my way, you young punks!"
Our only hope is that when two immortal jellyfish get together they have to swordfight to the death because "there can be only one." Otherwise, we all better practice breathing gelatin because it's gonna get straight Jellyfish up in here.
Do you have something funny to say about a random topic? You could be on the front page of Cracked.com tomorrow. Go here and find out how to create a Topic Page.
We aren't finished frightening you yet. Check out The 6 Most Adorable Animals (To Ever Go On a Bloody Rampage) and The 6 Deadliest Creatures (That Can Fit In Your Shoe).
And stop by our Top Picks (Updated Today! Shit!) to see videos of DOB reenacting his favorite scenes from Highlander.