With so many animals in the animal kingdom, there are bound to be slow ones, fast ones, big ones, small ones, etc. As the owner of allaboutsloths.com, I write articles about one of the slowest-moving animals on the planet – the sloth. For this particular article, I decided to do some research to see what other slow animals I could find. As a result, I have come up with a slow animals list.
Within this list, I will introduce some slow animals, I will briefly discuss a little bit of information about each of them, and I will present some numbers in an attempt to help you understand just how slow they are. Then, for comparison purposes, I will present a few fast-moving animals. So, let the slowness begin!
The Slow List
Some animals don’t ever seem to be in any kind of hurry at all (I’m like that sometimes, too). While there are certainly quite a number of slow animals out there, I have narrowed my list down to six for this article. In no particular order (other than alphabetic), here is my list of six slow-moving animals:
- Giant Tortoise
- Gila Monster
- Slow Loris
According to World Wildlife Fund, “The giant tortoise is an iconic species from the Galápagos and is only found on these islands. They are the largest living tortoise in the world.”
Giant tortoises can grow to be over five feet long and can weigh 700 lbs, so it would make perfect sense to me that an animal that is that big would move slowly, which it does. According to The BBC, “A giant tortoise can travel at most, 10km per month, crawling along at snail speeds of 60 metres per hour.” 60 metres per hour is equal to 0.06 kilometers per hour!
There are a number of fast-moving lizards that can be found on this planet. However, the gila monster is not one of them! This lizard (which is venomous), is not found in very many locations. According to Live Science, “Gila monsters are only found in the Sonoran, Mojave and Chihuahuan deserts in the southwestern United States and northwestern Mexico.” Live Science also states that, “Gila monsters can only run about 1 mph (1.6 km/h).”
Also known as “sea cows”, this very large (yet very gentle) mammal can only live in warm water and can be found in four places: in West Africa, in the Gulf of Mexico, in a specific area of South America, and in the Caribbean Sea. Manatees can weigh 3,000+ lbs so it may not come as a surprise that they move very slowly. According to National Geographic, “Powering themselves with their strong tails, manatees typically glide along at 5 miles an hour but can swim 15 miles an hour in short bursts.” Five miles per hour converts to be just over eight kilometers per hour.
According to Ocean Conservancy, “Seahorses…are the slowest-moving of all fish species because of an impeccably tiny fin in the middle of their backs being the only way to propel themselves. This one little fin can beat back and forth up to 50 times a second, but the size of the fin keeps it from making much progress when it comes down to distance traveled.”
As far as speed numbers go, seahorses max out at around eight kilometers per hour.
Adorable, gentle, lovable, cute, wonderful, amazing…..all words that can be used to describe the sloth. Oh, yeah – slow is definitely another one! Sloths are the slowest-moving mammal (as well as one of the slowest-moving animals) on the entire planet. While in the trees, sloths are able to move more quickly than they are able to move while they are on the ground (or should I say that they move even slower while they are on the ground than they do while they are in the trees). In the trees, they move at less than 0.2 kilometers per hour and on the ground, that speed drops to just over 0.1 kilometers per hour!
Appropriately named, this beautiful (and super cute) creature (which lives in various parts of Asia) is actually venomous. But still beautiful and super cute! It was one of the animals that made it onto my “Cute List” in my article titled, “What Are The Cutest Animals? There Are So Many!“.
As far as how quickly (or how slowly) the slow loris moves, Animalia states that “Although considered slow movers, slow lorises frequently ‘race walk’ and are able to move as far as 8 km-per night. They are also able to stay totally still for hour after hour if this is needed.”
The Other End Of The Speed Spectrum
Now that we have talked a little bit about some slow-moving animals, let’s take a look at some of the speedsters out there. Specifically, I will present and discuss a little bit about each of the following fast-moving animals:
- Peregrine Falcon
The fastest bird (and fastest animal) on the planet is the peregrine falcon. According to Guinness World Records, “In 2005, “Frightful”, a peregrine falcon owned by Ken Franklin of Friday Harbor, Washington, USA, was clocked at 242 mph (389.46 km/h) while stooping (diving after prey) from nearly three miles in the air.” Check out more of the details about this world record here: https://www.guinnessworldrecords.com/world-records/70929-fastest-bird-diving.
The fastest land animal is the cheetah, which is able to reach speeds of over 120 kilometers per hour!
I can recall from my younger days a certain trip to a local mall. At this particular mall, a cheetah was brought in for information and promotional purposes (as this cheetah appeared in a movie of some kind). Being too young to truly appreciate the situation fully, yet being old enough to remember it vividly to this day, I had the incredible opportunity to pet this cheetah. As it was lying there, looking so relaxed and comfortable, I continued to pet this beautiful creature and while doing so, heard it purr! Wow! What an amazing moment for me to experience and what a wonderful memory for me to have.
While not as fast of a land animal as the cheetah, the pronghorn is #2 as it can run along at speeds of over 88 kilometers per hour. At around the same time as the writing of this article, approximately 1,000 pronghorn came into the city that I live in, which is not something that we see around here every day!
Would You Rather Be Slooooowwwww Or Would You Rather Be Fast—->>>>?
So, my slow animals list has now been created. In this article, I introduced some slow animals, I briefly discussed a little bit of information about each of them, and I presented some numbers in an attempt to help you understand just how slow they are. Plus, I presented a few fast-moving, animals, too.
With super-fast (and super-slow) animals all being a part of the animal kingdom, do you have a favorite one? If so, is it a fast one, is it a slow one, or is it one that is somewhere in between? Please feel free to leave any thoughts, comments, or questions regarding this article in the section below.
Thank you for taking the time to read this article – I truly hope that you enjoyed it.
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