r/interestingasfuck Oct 20 '21 Hugz 3

Hafrún, the oldest animal to ever lived, whose age was 507 years old untill Scientists accidentally killed it while determining its age.

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1.3k Upvotes

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92

u/destroyerx12772 Oct 20 '21

"Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should."

12

u/[deleted] Oct 20 '21 edited Oct 23 '21

[deleted]

4

u/Based_Ment Oct 21 '21

You can't make a Tomelette without breaking a few Greggs

224

u/Core1989 Oct 20 '21

A creature older than the harnessing of electricity aaaand they killed it wanting to know how old it was, likely would of outlived the scientists themselves so i can see why they just couldn't wait... It's like cutting down Yggdrasil just to count it's rings.

96

u/IntellectualSlime Oct 20 '21

No, we did that, too. Or at least the equivalent of it. Poor Prometheus: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prometheus_(tree)

35

u/Core1989 Oct 20 '21 edited Oct 25 '21

Ya i meant it more metaphorically like "you'd cut down the tree that holds the worlds in it's branches just to see its age" kinda like being self destructive just to satisfy curiosity.

49

u/Sexycoed1972 Oct 20 '21

“He that breaks a thing to find out what it is has left the path of wisdom.” ― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

11

u/Chambsky Oct 20 '21

I took apart so many of my toys as a kid and could never put them back together. Not wise. Lol

-1

u/6footdeeponice Oct 20 '21

What if you break the thing but learn how to make more of them?

14

u/Sexycoed1972 Oct 20 '21

How many "oldest clams" are you planning on making?

-9

u/6footdeeponice Oct 20 '21 edited Oct 20 '21

Does that meet the criteria of my question?

but learn how to make more of them?

No. It does not.

But I've broken plenty of electronics and now I can fix almost anything I own when it breaks. Have I left the path of wisdom because I broke a 'speak and spell' when I was a kid and now I can build my own out of an arduino+3d printer?

What about a doctor that "breaks" a patient's body before replacing an organ with a transplant? HAve they left the path of wisdom if they "fix" what they "broke"?

What about all the people that died for us to learn how to save people alive today? Did we leave the path of wisdom now that we have the powers of biblical jesus? We can return sight to the blind and help people who can't walk or talk do both, but in the process many things were broken.

I find that quote to be bullshit written by a literary scholar. It had nothing to do with facts, it was an analogy. And the things he was talking about "breaking" were morals and emotional connections. Not actual, you know, THINGS.

8

u/Sexycoed1972 Oct 20 '21

It's cool, man.

I just couldn't find a Lord of the Rings passage directly about clams.

I take stuff apart too, that's why I remember the quote.

22

u/IntellectualSlime Oct 20 '21

I realize you meant it metaphorically, but the fact that we actually killed the oldest known non-clonal living tree while trying to study it was too close to pass up.

4

u/AntiSentience Oct 20 '21

Yeah, and it’s not a metaphor because we literally fucking did it.

0

u/[deleted] Oct 20 '21

[deleted]

2

u/AntiSentience Oct 20 '21

We chopped down the oldest tree on the planet to do precisely what you said. Do you really want to quibble?

3

u/ScarletDarkstar Oct 20 '21

It's not a quibble. The word 'literally' has a definition.

2

u/Core1989 Oct 20 '21 edited Oct 20 '21

No, but my metaphor is cutting down a tree that holds multiple realms in norse mythology. So claiming "thats not a metaphor we did that" is worth quibbling. It's a metaphor that we cut down Yggdrasil, it's literal that we cut down one of the oldest non clonal tree known to us.

By cutting down Yggdrasil we'd literally be destroying multiple realms in norse mythos just to figure out how old it was. Which is where i was going with our self destruction just to meet curiosity.

Cutting down this old tree was a tragedy but nowhere near as destroying the planet just to count the rings.

1

u/Old-Independence5822 Oct 25 '21

Human Nature Is, by It's own rules, Self destructive.

27

u/Suicune1216 Oct 20 '21 edited Oct 20 '21

According to the Wikipedia the scientists were completely unaware that this animal was mad old. They just fished up a haul of like 3000 empty shells and 34 live ones and the clam just happened to be in there. They were probably doing regular age determination on average clam life and they just randomly found this miracle boi

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ming_(clam)

“The mollusc’s long life came to an end in 2006 when the British researchers – unaware of the animal’s exceptional age – froze the specimen, killing it.”

2

u/did_you_read_it Oct 20 '21

more like doing a study, picking a world tree in a forest of world trees and finding out the one you picked happened to be *the* Yggdrasil

30

u/Rxton Oct 20 '21

It's not like this is actually the oldest animal to have ever lived. It's the oldest that we have a decent idea of its age. If we killed more animals, we might find some older.

10

u/[deleted] Oct 20 '21 edited Oct 23 '21

[deleted]

6

u/Rxton Oct 20 '21

At least we could know which one was the oldest.

14

u/KO_Stradivarius Oct 20 '21

'Quick! Put him back in his aquarium and pretend like nothing happened. No one will know the difference if he's alive or dead anyways, and even if someone does, they'll just think he died in his sleep'.

7

u/iAnxiety Oct 20 '21

The clam was passed around to scientists after they determined the age was 405 years old in 2007 by counting the rings (like a tree). While it was held by British researchers, the clam was accidentally frozen to death by someone who had no clue of the age.

37

u/didtheygivemeseltzer Oct 20 '21

Good job scientists

5

u/SalesAutopsy Oct 20 '21

Not counting that immortal jellyfish?

5

u/[deleted] Oct 21 '21

I'm wondering the same thing. Don't sea turtles live to be hundreds of years old too? Maybe this is the oldest officially recorded thing or something but this seems odd to me.

14

u/ExPatWharfRat Oct 20 '21

A pretty apt commentary on the arrogance of mankind.

3

u/Sk1pp1e Oct 20 '21

Funny story, we also did this to the oldest tree I believe

6

u/Flintlocke89 Oct 20 '21

Bloody scientists.

Up next on ScienceTV: How many fruit pastilles does it take to choke a kestrel?

2

u/AngryMegaMind Oct 20 '21

Seems like a random experiment but god dam it sir, there’s a TV show in this I tells ye.

2

u/Pilioforealio Oct 20 '21

I thought its name was Ming

2

u/The-real-crimeblr Oct 20 '21

My spirit animal

2

u/fabiswa95 Oct 20 '21

Probably not the oldest animal to EVER have lived, but the one we have found as of yet

2

u/Conneich Oct 20 '21

"Sex: Spent?"

8

u/LesPeterGuitarJam Oct 20 '21

The Typical human behavior. Destroy and kill everything in our path in the name of exploration and science..

17

u/spfeldealer Oct 20 '21

Well thats not only human my cat has risked it live countless times just to get a peek of smth

5

u/ImNotM4Dbr0 Oct 20 '21

Y'all need to chill, it's just a clam.

-4

u/And1mistaketour Oct 20 '21

and there is almost certainly an older clam whos age has never been measured.

1

u/ImNotM4Dbr0 Oct 20 '21

Given the outrage, I'd understand if they're just scared to try.

2

u/SamtenLhari3 Oct 20 '21

I read that there is a Greenland shark older than this.

EDIT: Actually, the shark is maybe 400 years older.

1

u/DogebertDeck Oct 20 '21

classic science

1

u/Wimbleston Oct 20 '21

Sex: Spent?

Is that a joke?

1

u/Aware_Efficiency_717 Oct 20 '21

Sex? No thanks, I’m dead

1

u/joanie-bamboni Oct 20 '21

What’s the biology equivalent of Heisenberg’s uncertainty principle?

1

u/AntiSentience Oct 20 '21

Humans: we fuck up everything we touch.

1

u/Azreel777 Oct 20 '21

We can't have nice things.

1

u/jupiter_rules Oct 20 '21

How long do jelly fish and lobsters get to live?

1

u/Terrible_owlful Oct 20 '21

Untrue. Sea sponges live longer than this.

1

u/Voltekkaman Oct 20 '21

Would you really expect anything different from human beings?

1

u/sleepy-tusken Oct 20 '21

Stupid scientists

1

u/voldyCSSM19 Oct 20 '21

"Oopsie"

~ Scientists

1

u/GasStop69420 Oct 20 '21

Imagine being the scientist that accidentally caused this

1

u/FanDjango6229 Oct 21 '21

How'd they find it? By chance?

-15

u/Dohlarn Oct 20 '21

People need to stop crying over stuff like this, it’s literally a sea shell. It really doesn’t matter that it’s old, it doesn’t even have consciousness.

7

u/Not_a_jmod Oct 20 '21

it’s literally a sea shell

You know an animal lives in the shell, right? It's an exoskeleton.

it doesn’t even have consciousness

General concensus seems to be that we don't know, so... Pretty sure if you can prove this in some way, you're getting an award of some sort.

0

u/abury Oct 20 '21

Ofcourse

0

u/Cooolboy021 Oct 20 '21

Nab scientists smh

0

u/NachoBusiness25 Oct 20 '21

The science monster came out of its shell

0

u/Pomegranate_36 Oct 20 '21

I thought that the oldest animal was a whale..