Nature’s Most Amazing Animal Superpowers

When it comes to great talents, the animal world is plenty of inspiration, and many of nature’s super capabilities outshine their comic book equivalents. So put on your utility belts, and prepare to meet the evolution’s Avengers.

Chitons are a mollusc family that hasn’t evolved much in the last half billion years. Of course, why would you want to change if you have 17 regenerated rose iron magnetite encrusted teeth that can grind away algae-crusted rocks?

Every wannabe child scientist has spent time in the garden chasing lizards, and like the most of us, you probably ended up with a writhing tail and no lizard.

Many lizards and geckos have the ability to regrow their posteriors, but the mythical-looking axolotl salamander can restore complete limbs. This Hairy Frog, like Wolverine, can crush bones and force them out his fingers to form claws.

That has to be the most agonizing self-defense method in the animal kingdom, but at least your foes will know you’re serious when you stab them in the back with your own bones. In certain cases, the best way to live in nature is to go unnoticed.

The cuttlefish is a master mimic, able to not only replicate the shape of objects in its environment, but also to blend in with even the most complex furniture designs. On the bellies of some sharks, there are particular luminescent organs.

They emit a blue light that matches the hue of the sunlight above them, making them virtually undetectable to the predator swimming below. All red light has filtered out by the water above at the deepest parts of the sea, thus red animals like this jellyfish reflect no light. They’re as good as black down there.

Pit vipers, like the rattlesnake, have four eyes, two regular and quite frightening ones near specialized organs in front that let them to see a three-dimensional thermal vision of the world. You’re toast if you’re warm.

The next one is a true superpower. The Lesser Water Boatman has introduced to you. It’s a small bug that has the distinction of being the loudest animal on the planet in terms of size.

Just don’t tell him he’s a second-class citizen. Despite being only two millimeters long, he produces a call as loud as a power tool. How? He did this by pressing his penis on his abdomen.

Elephants can communicate without making a sound.

Instead, they use infrasound, which emits low-frequency waves that may travel hundreds of kilometers into the ground and are much below the range of the human ear.

Adult salmon can swim thousands of miles across oceans and up rushing rapids, returning to the same mountain streams they hatched in years before. It’s not quite telepathy, but it’s the closest thing we’ve found.

The magnetic field of the Earth can really guide them home. It’s unclear how they do it, but they’re born with a compass bearing that points exactly back home. Tardigrades.

Those charming, resilient, small teddy bears of the animal world can withstand temperatures ranging from minus 200 to 150 degrees Celsius, go without feeding for up to a decade, and simply shrug off the lethal radiation of space.

They could just be tough enough to establish the first Mars colony. Deinococcus Radiodurans is a kind of Deinococcus. It’s a bacterium that can tolerate two thousand times the amount of radiation that would kill a human. Manganese’s antioxidant qualities are to thank for this.

Do you believe that performing a little yoga will make you more flexible? The body of a sea cucumber constructed of a specific type of collagen that it can liquefy on command in order to fit into small openings.

Hyenas have steel stomachs, which makes sense for a creature that consumes rotting carcasses like ice cream sundaes. Their stomach acid is so powerful that they can devour anthrax-infected bodies and then laugh about it. The dragon millipede is a strangely pink insect, and one of the only pink organisms on the planet.


That’s generally a sign from nature that says, “Back off!” and with good reason. See, this poisonous beauty sprays clouds of almond-scented cyanide gas, but it’s probably too late if you get a sniff.

You could forgiven for believing the platypus was Mother Nature’s cruel joke on biologists. In fact, the earliest platypus skins dismissed as fakes because researchers mistook them for beaver hides with duckbills stitched on.

These monotremes can now use electro-reception to hunt. No need for eyes or ears. You can try to run, but the nerve impulse is already waiting for you. Electric eels have electrocites, which act like a live battery, accumulating charge. They have the option of releasing 500 volts of electric shock if they chose to discharge it.

That’s more than enough to kill a human, and it’ll certainly make your pulse skip a beat. Dung beetles have observed to excrete 1,100 times their body weight. That’s the equivalent of an adult individual dragging a dozen buses.

They’re not only extraordinarily powerful, but they’re also skilled astronomers, guiding their stinky cargo by the Milky Way’s light. The hairs on a gecko’s foot pads are miniscule, almost as small as the wavelength of light.

They are able to adhere to surfaces without the use of suction or fluids. Individual atoms in their feet interact with a wall or a window to form Van Der Waals interactions, which keep them in place. Wood frogs can hibernate by burying themselves at the frost line underground.

Rather than being ripped to shreds by ice needles and being as dead as a frozen hamburger patty, these frogs can cryo-preserve their bodies by filling their cells with glucose. It’s like antifreeze from nature.

Turritopsis is known as the “immortal jellyfish” by some. While it is unlikely to be immortal in the strictest sense. It can transform fully differentiated adult cells into embryos and then send them off to start a new life.

A peregrine falcon can reach nearly 250 miles per hour in an attack dive with the help of gravity. The sleek black marlin has clocked at 80 miles per hour. No land animal can match the cheetah,which can run at sixty miles per hour for a full minute. Spends more time in the air than on the ground at full speed.

In a single bound, a flea may leap two hundred times its own body length. This is due to unique features in their rear legs that resemble coiled springs.

That’s like six-foot-three me leaping a quarter-mile in a single bound! Thanks to an internal chemical reaction and some careful aim. The bombardier beetle can blast a spray of caustic chemicals out its posterior. Small organisms can killed or blinded by the practically boiling jet.

It reminds me of Cyclops from the X-Men, but in reverse. The mantis shrimp can punch with as much energy as a rifle bullet and reach speeds of 50 miles per hour with its club-like arms, in addition to having an enlarged visual range that can even detect polarized lights.

You’re dead before you even realize he’s swinging. Pistol shrimp claws may snap with such energy that they shoot a 60-mile-per-hour death bubble at their prey.

That bubble is as loud as a supersonic aircraft, and it’s almost as hot as the sun’s surface due to a phenomena known as cavitation. They’ll probably be able to kill and cook their dinner at the same time! Nature has a lot of lovely super powers, as you can see, and they’re all real.

It’s exciting to read stories about far-flung worlds, leotard-wearing heroes, and nasty villains. It’s also nice to know that evolution has already written some of the best stories. Are there any cool animals that I missed?

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