Long Durational Natural Phenomenon 

Existence of Siberian Actinobacteria

Duration: Approximately 400,000-600,000 years

Text via Encyclopedia of Life
Cover photograph by Wikipedia user Optigan13

The Siberian Actinobacteria has existed for approximately 400,000-600,000 years, making it the oldest living organism on planet Earth. 

   Slant cultures demonstrating variations in colony appearance between aerobic  Actinobacteria .  CDC/Dr. David Berd (PHIL #3078), 1972.


Slant cultures demonstrating variations in colony appearance between aerobic ActinobacteriaCDC/Dr. David Berd (PHIL #3078), 1972.

They are a group of Gram-positive bacteria. Most are found in the soil, and they include some of the most common soil life, playing important roles in decomposition and humus formation. Some form branching filaments, which somewhat resemble the mycelia of the unrelated fungi, among which they were originally classified as the Actinomycetes. All of these bacteria are aerobic and a few forms are pathogens, such as Mycobacterium. Some of the bacteria are thermophilic. Siberian Actinobacteria are not dormant or frozen but actually has been alive and slowly growing for a half a million years. 

To read more about Actinobacteria, click here.