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Amphibians and reptiles, particularly turtles and tortoises, are well-known examples of animals with long lifespans. A team of international scientists published the largest study of aging and longevity in herptiles to date, and found considerable variation across 77 species.

There is anecdotal evidence that some species of turtles and other ectothermic--or cold-blooded-- animals have long lifespans. However, this evidence is spotty and mostly based on animals living in captivity. An international team of scientists analyzed data from 107 wild populations of 77 species of reptiles and amphibians for a comprehensive report on longevity and aging. The goals of the study included investigating whether cold-blooded animals age slower and live longer than warm-blooded animals, if environmental temperature influences aging and longevity, and if aging rate and longevity correspond to other biological traits. The researchers documented for the first time that wild reptiles and amphibians have greater variation in aging rates and lifespans than birds and mammals. Animals such as turtles with protective physical traits and a slow pace of life had particularly slow aging rates and long lifespans. This study contributes to knowledge of the complexity of aging and could inform conservation strategies for reptiles and amphibians. 

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