Although when you think of large animals you probably imagine dinosaurs or woolly mammoths, there are lots of enormous creatures roaming our world today. In fact, some of the biggest animals in history are alive at this very moment. So get ready because from rabbits the size of dogs to crabs bigger than humans, these are 25 Abnormally Large Animals That Really Exist!
You may find it hard to believe, but hippos are whales’ closest living relatives, and they still love the water. In fact, their name comes from an ancient Greek word meaning “river horse.”
Found in a small part of Africa, the eastern gorilla is the largest and most endangered primate on the planet.
As big as a dog, this is the largest rabbit in the world. This old breed of rabbits was originally domesticated around the city of Ghent in Belgium.
Since they live so deep in the ocean, not much was known about giant squids until recently. In fact, it wasn’t until 2004 that Japanese researchers took the first pictures of a giant squid in its natural habitat.
The largest ray in the world can reach nearly 8 meters across. Perhaps most surprisingly, it can jump straight out of the water.
Reknowned for its size and aggression, the largest predatory fish in the world has no natural predators (except for the killer whale…nobody messes with killer whales. Nobody.)
If you thought rats were big, meet their oversized cousin. The capybara is the largest rodent in the world. They typically live in large groups and can be found in the southern regions of South America.
The largest snake in the world can reach nearly 8 meters (25 feet). The reticulated python can be longer but it is also thinner, so not as massive.
Found in Africa, the perch is one of the largest freshwater fish. In fact, in the Hausa language it is referred to as giwan ruwa, or “water elephant.”
These crocodiles are the largest reptiles in the world. Spread from Australia to India, the saltwater crocodile is an apex predator, meaning that they are at the top of their food chain. They have been known to attack just about anything that moves.
Giant Golden Crowned Flying Fox
This endangered fruit bat from the Philippines is part of the megabat family. As with some of the other animals on this list, they are presently endangered.
Like bats? Check out 25 Incredible Facts About Bats You Probably Didn’t Know.
The largest lizard in the world, komodo dragons eat up to 80% of their body weight in one meal. In fact, their metabolism is so slow that they only require about 12 meals per year. Also, they are venomous.
Cassowaries are the heaviest non-African birds. Although they are very shy, they have been known to kill people who wander too close.
Also called the “killer whale,” orcas are the largest member of the dolphin family. They are also highly intelligent and live in complex societies.
Not only are sperm whales the largest toothed predator, they also have the biggest brain of any animal.
Japanese Spider Crab
They’re found in the waters around…you guessed it…Japan! These crabs are the largest known arthropods in the world and can weigh up to 19 kg (40 lbs). Another cool fact – they can live up to a century!
Southern Elephant Seal
These bad boys are one of the largest carnivores in the world. The biggest one on record was 5,000 kg (11,000 lbs).
Found from Europe to Asia, the dalmatian pelican has the largest average mass of any flying bird.
This somewhat violent and flightless creature is also the largest bird in the world. They can run quite fast, however, at near 69.2 km/h (43 mph). This makes them the fastest birds on land and also the fastest two legged animals.
We all know giraffes; they’re those things at the zoo. And as you may have suspected…they are the tallest land animal on our planet. Their necks can be up to 2 meters (6.5 feet) long, or about half of their height!
This flat fish is the largest bony fish in the world. Note: bony fish are any fish that have bones rather than cartilage. Most fish fall into this category. It is also the largest group of vertebrates.
Chinese Giant Salamander
You’ll never guess where this salamander lives….that’s right, China! Unfortunately, however, they are endangered because they are considered a delicacy. And also, they are hunted for use in traditional medicines.
The polar bear is the largest land carnivore alive today. It’s followed very closely by the brown bear. Just remember though, if you meet a brown bear…play dead. If you meet a polar bear…well, run? Note: The saying goes, “If it’s brown lay down; if it’s black fight back; if it’s white good night.” (Don’t mess with polar bears.)
African Bush Elephant
The largest living land animal has no natural predators although the calves can be attacked by lions and crocodiles. As adults, they can grow up to 11 tons!
It’s the largest known animal in history. In fact, just its tongue weighs as much as an Asian Elephant (2.7 tons), and its heart is about the size and weight of a Mini Cooper.
If you enjoyed this list, be sure to check out 25 Larger Than Life Animals We Can’t Believe Are Real.
Photos: Feature Image: Takashi Hososhima via flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0, text added, 25. pixabay.com (public domain), 24. Joe McKenna from San Diego, California, Eastern lowland gorilla, CC BY 2.0, 23. Stamatisclan, Runt and Paxie, CC BY-SA 3.0, 22. wikimedia commons (public domain), 21-19. pixabay.com (public domain), 18. Tserres34, Green Anaconda – Parana Madeirinha – AZ, CC BY-SA 4.0, 17. Pavel Zuber, Lates niloticus, CC BY-SA 3.0, 16. pixabay.com (public domain), 15. Gregg Yan, Acerodon jubatus by Gregg Yan, CC BY-SA 3.0, 14-12. pixabay.com (public domain), 11. Gabriel Barathieu, Mother and baby sperm whale, CC BY-SA 2.0, 10. Takashi Hososhima via flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0, 9. Liam Quinn via flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0, 8-6. pixabay.com (public domain), 5. Fred Hsu (Wikipedia:User:Fredhsu on en.wikipedia), Mola mola ocean sunfish Monterey Bay Aquarium 2, CC BY-SA 3.0, 4. Toby Jungen via flickr, CC BY 2.0, 3-1. pixabay.com (public domain)