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The World’s Most Extreme Animal Sizes Will Blow Your Mind

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Gigantic Pigs

From tiny frogs smaller than a fingernail to enormous whales bigger than buses, the range of sizes in the animal kingdom is truly mind-boggling. Some creatures have evolved to be absolutely massive, while others are miniature and barely visible. Let’s explore some of the most extreme animal sizes on planet Earth that will make your jaw drop!

Gigantic Pigs the Size of Bears

You’ve probably seen some pretty big pigs before, but nothing compares to their ancestral wild hogs. We’re talking about giant forest hogs and giant warthogs found in Africa, which can reach sizes comparable to black bears!

Male giant forest hogs typically weigh around 275 lbs (125 kg) but can reach over 600 lbs (270 kg). Now that’s a big pig! They use their large size and tusks to defend themselves against predators like lions and crocodiles. Their huge size gives them an advantage in fighting over mates as well.

Meanwhile, male giant warthogs can exceed 330 lbs (150 kg) and females reach up to 260 lbs (120 kg). Just look at the sheer bulk on these mega porkers! They are the third largest swine species behind wild boars and giant forest hogs. With their massive heads and upward curving tusks, you certainly don’t want to mess with these hulking hogs.

So next time you see a pot-bellied pig or farm hog, just imagine their ancient ancestors that were bear-sized beasts roaming the forests and savannas of Africa. It blows the mind!

Blue Whales vs Elephants: Clash of the Gentle Giants

We all know elephants are colossal creatures, but did you know the blue whale makes even elephants look tiny in comparison? The blue whale is not only the largest animal alive today, but also the largest animal in history as far as we know.

The blue whale can reach astounding lengths of over 100 feet (30 meters) and weigh more than 300,000 lbs (150 tons)! That’s about the weight of 40 African elephants stacked together. Their hearts alone can be the size of a small car, capable of pumping 60 tons of blood through their massive bodies.

One of their newborn calves can weigh as much as a full-grown Asian elephant. Talk about a heavyweight baby! The calf gains a staggering 200 pounds per day on its mother’s rich milk and doubles in size within seven months.

But don’t underestimate the elephant. The African bush elephant is the world’s largest terrestrial animal, weighing around 15,000 lbs (6.8 tons) on average. Its formidable tusks can grow up to 10 feet long (3 meters) and weigh a spine-crushing 120 lbs (54 kg) each.

Just imagine if these gentle giants ever came to blows! It would truly be a titanic tussle for the ages. While the far larger whale would hold an advantage in sheer size, the elephant’s tusks could inflict serious damage if given the chance. Let’s hope these magnificent creatures never have to find out!

Giraffes and Anteaters: Who Has the Longest Tongue?

From 18-inch anteater tongues to 2-foot giraffe tongues, these animals take “long-tongued” to the extreme!

The giraffe’s iconic 20-inch black tongue is perfectly adapted for effortlessly plucking leaves from the tallest acacia trees. The tongue’s bluish-purple tinge is thought to protect it from sun exposure as well. Giraffes even have thick, tough lips to guard their tongues while foraging on thorny vegetation.

But the award for the longest tongue relative to body length goes to anteaters! The giant anteater’s tubular tongue can extend over two feet to slurp up 35,000 ants and termites every day. It’s sticky saliva coats the tongue and entraps their insect prey.

Smaller tamandua anteaters have even more remarkable 16-inch tongues, exceeding their own body length. With tongues longer than their arms, anteaters can tap into ant and termite colonies deep inside their mounds.

While giraffes rely on tongues to reach treetop delicacies, anteaters depend on their tongues when hunting underground. No matter where their food hides, these animals have crazy tongues to seek it out!

Pinkie Finger Babies: Tiny Animal Newborns

From fuzzy little pinkie mice to bat pups the size of beans, some animal newborns are tinier than you could ever imagine. Let’s look at the babies keeping the records for extreme small size.

The pygmy marmoset monkey is the smallest monkey breed in the world. But even more shockingly tiny are their teeny-weeny babies that weigh just 15 grams at birth – that’s less than the weight of a slice of bread!

The feathery mouse-sized Etruscan shrew is the lightest mammal on Earth. Their babies are utterly miniscule, often tipping the scales at a measly 0.2 grams – lighter than a paperclip!

But the tiniest vertebrate babies of all belong to the small frogs of New Guinea. The paedophryne amauensis frog gives birth to teensy tadpoles smaller than the head of a pin, just 7 millimeters long. That’s the tiniest baby known from the entire vertebrate family!

Barely able to squeak, squirm or crawl, these micro mini animal babies are impossibly adorable. But they also illustrate the miracles of nature – that life can begin so improbably small.

When Babies Are Born Bigger Than Their Mothers

From hefty hippo calves to bouncing big baby bats, some animal newborns defy logic by being considerably larger than their moms. How on Earth do they give birth to babies bigger than themselves?

Theeku, a female hippopotamus at the Denver Zoo, gave birth to a whopping 120-pound calf – despite the average female hippo weighing just 3,000 pounds herself! Hippos are adapted for delivering such heavyweight babies.

Female bats also punch above their weight class when it comes to birthing relatively giant babies. The giant golden-crowned flying fox bat species can weigh up to just 2 pounds themselves, yet give birth to babies weighing a quarter of their own body size!

But the most extreme case of bigger babies might be kangaroos. Red kangaroo mothers are often just 55 pounds, while their newborns can weigh 35 pounds with legs strong enough to kick their way to the pouch. The moby big joey keeps growing until it’s 200 times the mother’s weight!

From chubby hippo calves to bulky bat babes, some animal mothers must endure a heroic ordeal to deliver their babies that are so disproportionately large. It’s a phenomenon that truly defies belief!

In Conclusion

From hogzilla-sized pigs to pygmy-tiny frogs, the incredible diversity of sizes in the animal kingdom never fails to amaze. Some creatures like giraffes and anteaters have evolved extreme features like two-foot tongues to help them thrive. Marine giants like blue whales dwarf even the largest land animals. Meanwhile, tiny newborns like pinkie mice illustrate just how small life can begin. And mothers of species like hippos and bats overcome incredible odds to give birth to babies bigger than themselves. So next time you see an animal, take a moment to appreciate the wonders of its size, whether giant or tiny!

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