Outliving both the dinosaur extinction and the ice age, 12/21/12 will be easy peasy for these guys… the Orinoco Crocodile.
This heavy weight critter is amongst the largest of the crocodile species with males getting anywhere from 13-16 feet in length and weighing in between 800-1400 lbs. The Orinoco crocodile is endemic to the Orinoco River which flows through Venezuela and Columbia. Lacking sweat glands these guys can be found on the river banks with their mouths wide open as a mechanism for cooling off. Soooo what qualifies the crocodile species as the ultimate survivor… well for starters, they are extremely tough! During territorial fights they are known to tear limbs off their opponents! Unbelievably, those unfortunate one's with a missing arm or leg are capable of living well into their 70’s. The crocodiles incredible immune system is to thank for this! Scientists are actually looking into croc blood as a potential HIV cure. Another ice age in our future??? That’s not a problem for this critter they can adapt very well to extreme temperature changes as well as starvation. There are numerous examples of crocs not feeding for an entire year and while they get desperately thin they are perfectly capable of bouncing back once food reappears. Surviving Mother Nature’s disasters is one thing, surviving mankind is another. The Orinoco crocodile is critically endangered due to over hunting during the 1940’s and 1960’s. Currently it’s thought that roughly over 500 exist in the wild. Even with conservation efforts put forth by the Columbian government, the comeback of this critter seems extremely grave. This guy may not be the cuddliest of creatures but he is one of the toughest! and hey, everybody loves a tough guy.