Greenland sharks have the longest lifespan of any vertebrate animal, so it is perhaps unsurprising that the species would boast the oldest living individual vertebrate as well.
Greenland sharks are known for their longevity, living for hundreds of years.
In a study published this summer, researchers used traces of carbon-14 produced by nuclear tests in the 1950s to determine the age of Greenland sharks, by examining lens crystallines in their eyes. The researchers suggested that the shark could have been born around the year 1505 by measuring the overall size of the sea creature. While the animal was discovered a few months ago, its potential age was revealed in a study in the Science journal.
Following the discovery, the scientists made use of the radiocarbon dating technology to examine 28 different Greenland shark's eye lenses and find out that the oldest one, discovered previously, is around 392 years old.
Touchdown! Expedition 53 astronauts make successful descent to Earth from ISS
Three crew members will continue working aboard the ISS - Russia's Alexander Misurkin and NASA's Mark Vande Hei and Joseph Acaba. Ryazanskiy also participated in a spacewalk, helping his fellow cosmonaut Fyodor Yurchikhin release several nanosatellites .
In September, Nielsen shared a stomach-churning photo of the remains of a polar bear extracted from the stomach of a Greenland shark.
'And no, I don't think the shark attacked the bear, ' Nielsen wrote.
An atypical study led by Danish scientist Julius Nielsen has discovered an 18 feet long ancient creature in the North Atlantic Ocean. "It is much more likely a carcass found by the shark". "Together with colleagues in Demark, Greenland, USA, and China, we are now sequencing its whole nuclear genome which will help us discover why the Greenland shark not only lives longer than other shark species but other vertebrates".
"This is the longest living vertebrate on the planet", Professor Kim Praebel said at a symposium organized by the Fisheries Society of the British Isles. Despite its considerable size, comparable to that of a great white shark, the Greenland shark is a scavenger and has never been observed hunting.
As numerous sharks pre-date the Industrial Revolution and large-scale commercial fishing, the sharks have even been called "living time capsules" that could help shed light on how human behaviour impacts the oceans.