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Rachel Sussman, “The World’s Oldest Living Organisms”

by Stewart Brand on November 18th, 02010


The Missing Science of
Biological Longevity

A Summary by Stewart Brand

Creative photographer Sussman showed beautiful slides of very elderly organisms. The captions were as crucial as the images—naming the species, the place, and the approximate age. You can see many of them here.

The series began with the only animal—an eighteen-foot brain coral in the waters of Tobago, thought to be 2,000 years old. An enormous baobob in South Africa might be 2,000 years old. Then there is the astounding welwitschia mirabilis of the Namibian desert, a conifer that feeds on mist, with the longest leaves in the plant kingdom…

Read the rest of Stewart Brand’s Summary here.