Top 10 shortest living animals in the world


The change in metabolism, brain to body ratio, environment, and many unknown factors makes different lifespan for different species. Some animals live for hundreds of years like bowhead whales and eels. At the same time, the lifetime of some other species of animals limited to only a few hours. Here the list of 10 shortest living animals in the world.

Domestic Rabbits, 8-12 Years

domestic rabbit

Rabbits are small mammal live in various parts of the world. The domestic rabbits only have an average lifespan of 8-12 years. They found in different size and colors. But the lovely species only have a lifespan of few years. Fat deposition and uterine cancer are the main diseases that affect domestic rabbits. Females are more prone to these diseases than the male rabbit. Without proper medicare and feeding, they may die soon.

The large feeding of root vegetables and fruits also causes many health problems in rabbits. They also demand a large amount of water every day. Rabbits become prolific breeders because of their shorter lifespan.

 Guinea Pigs, 4 Years

guinea pig

Guinea pigs are lovable social animals native to South Africa. The cute guinea pigs only have the shorter lifespan of  4 years. They are readily affected by series of diseases. It demands to feed these cute pets at a right interval of time and to take a veterinary check-up at the right time. Only the proper care can extend the life span of guinea pigs up to 4 years. But it seems to be quite hard to keep guinea pigs from the illness like scurvy, bronchitis, and bumblefoot.

 Mosquitofish, 2 years



Mosquitofish is one of freshwater fishes native to the United States. They only live up to two years. But the mosquitofish that live in households have a longer life than of ones that live in saline water. The female fishes also have slightly larger lifetime than that of males. The life of mosquitofishes in saline water protect them a number of predator fishes because all fishes can’t exist within the saline water.

 Chameleon, 1 Year


Panther chameleons only have a lifespan of 1 year. In fact, it is the shortest lifespan among reptiles and chameleon family. Panther chameleons are native to Northern and Eastern parts of Madagascar. They show rapid mating behavior because of shorter life span. Interestingly the entire adult chameleons disappeared before next generation emerges out from the eggs.  The rapid color changing is the most noticeable characteristic of chameleons. So that they can blend into the natural environment. The diet of chameleons mainly includes crickets and worms.

 House Mouse, 1 years


The average lifespan of house mouse is 1 year. But predators like cats and poisoning will shorten the life span of these small mammals even shorter. House mouses are also prone to many health problems during hair growing stage. They are also prolific breeders because of shorter life span.

 Dragon Fly, 4 months


There are 5000 different species of dragonflies are in the world. The maximum lifespan of the beautiful insect is about 4 months. But most of the dragonflies won’t live that much time because they can be easily eaten by spiders, birds, lizards and frogs. The strong wind and other harsh climate conditions also stop them from coming out as a dragonfly from larvae form.

Dragonflies also can’t fly easily after the completion of larvae stage. This condition makes them to easily preyed by reptiles and birds. They also can’t live longer in cold conditions.

 Houseflies, 4 Weeks


Houseflies are most common and one of the irritating insects found across our residences. The lifetime of houseflies is limited to the only short period of 4 weeks. The houseflies live in households generally have more lifespan than ones live in wild environments. Within the shorter life cycle, every female housefly laid up to 1000 eggs.

 Drone Ants, 3 Weeks

drone ant


Drone ants are the male member within an ant colony. They have the only life cycle of 3 weeks. Drone ants follow a lazy behavior, won’t work much. The ant colonies are always established by females. Interestingly drone ants died fast once they mated with females. Thus, drone ants play an important role in the existence of ant colonies within their shorter life cycle.

 Gastrotrichs, 3 Days



Gastrotrichs are one of the marine microorganisms that are used to live in marine environments. They grow up to a maximum size of 3 millimeters and have life circle of 3 days. They have transparent body structure and swim along with currents. They also used to attach with other water bodies using hundreds of adhesive tubes on the lower part of the bodies. Gastrotrichs possess both male and female organs for reproduction.

 Mayflies, 24 hours


Mayflies have the shortest lifespan on Earth. Their life lasting only for 24 hours. Mayflies also called as ‘one-day insects’ because of their shortest life span. There are 2500 different species of mayflies in the world. In fact, some members of mayfly family die within few hours. So mayflies spend most of their lifetime as nymphs. The one and only purpose of mayflies is a reproduction. Within this short period of life, they form groups and dance together on all available surfaces.

Jithin MS

Love to explore about most interesting and unknown facts about the world. I write stories and doing SEO works.

  • Ryane

    I’d just like to say that the last photo is not a may fly. It’s a damsel fly. :)

  • Davide Miozzi

    This article is also written in the poorest English I’ve ever read in the Internet. They probably hired some kid from a Bangladeshi Nike factory for that.

    • John Zachariah

      That is rude

      • Davide Miozzi

        Actually, it is indeed, I might have had a very bad day, that day.

        • John Zachariah

          That’s understandable

          • Selinda Veldre

            It is really written horribly though…

        • Will-o

          It’s your right.

  • Zac Paul

    Noooooo!!!…The entry about house rabbits is inaccurate!!! This is not good info for prospective rabbit pet parents and is potentially misleading!!! With good care, a healthy house rabbit can easily live for a decade!!

    The 6-7 year lifespan is an archaic figure from over 15 years ago. Today, 8-13 years is more appropriate. This increase has come up thanks to a better understanding of dietary requirements, medical care, and hindgut function, and will likely increase further in the future. IIRC the oldest living rabbit is around 17 years.

    As for dietary requirements & health, the bigger factor here is the quality of the pellet food and timothy hay that forms the core dietary pillars. While minimizing the feeding of root vegetables and some fruits are important, these are less significant dietary issues compared to the most important pillars, which have been neglected here. One thing that plays a huge role in house rabbit lifespan (and health) is the owner’s competency in rabbit nutrition. Some foods are top tier where as others contain potentially toxic ingredients (e.g., certain nuts.)

    From an evolutionary perspective, wild rabbits are prolific breeders because they are Nature’s Dinner. Like many other domesticated animals, there is a huge difference in the lifespan of wild versus domesticated.

    • Jerkel

      Yeah, 8-13 years sounds about right. I had a pet rabbit that lived to be 14.

  • Remigio Llaguno (Toy)

    The short happy life of a Mayfly (#1),but isn’t it so unfair?They spend their last minutes on earth dancing.If I could collect their tears and record their voices it would be magical

  • dentcj

    wow – very poorly written. and guinea pigs are from South America, not South Africa. Sigh.

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