Nature is astounding in its variety, and that seems all truer when we look at the different sizes and natures of living things. In the animal world, there are animals with hearts greater than a car’s size or can make noises louder than jet engines. There are also animals who can’t even be seen without being put under a microscope. For today, though, we’ll be looking at the large animals. We’ll be talking about the top 50 biggest animals in the world, all ranked in order.
To make that list, we’ll not only be looking at their lengths but also their body mass and will be taking the average size of their species into consideration. So, without further delay, let’s look at the list
Top 50 Biggest Animals in the World Ranked
50) Aldabra Giant Tortoise
|Size||3 – 4 ft|
|Weight||150 – 250 kg|
|Lifespan||80 – 255 years|
Aldabra Giant Tortoise is one of the largest tortoise species in the world, endemic only to Aldabra Atoll Islands in Seychelles. These herbivorous tortoises are quite small in number and listed as a Vulnerable species in IUCN’s Red List.
49) Galapagos Tortoise
|Scientific name||Chelonoidis niger|
|Size||4 – 4.10 feet|
|Weight||200 – 300 kg|
|Lifespan||100 – 150 years|
The largest species of tortoise are endemic to the Galapagos Islands. The Galapagos Tortoises are believed to show gigantism as the closest relatives of this species are almost 100 times smaller than their current average size.
48) Green Sea Turtle
|Scientific name||Chelonia mydas|
|Weight||68 – 190 kg|
|Lifespan||Over 70 years|
|Diet||Juveniles are carnivorous and adults are omnivorous|
Green Sea Turtles are the only herbivorous turtle species. They are also one of the largest turtles and one of the biggest animals in the world. Their paddle-like limbs are called flippers and these help them moving in the water smoothly.
47) Leatherback Sea Turtle
|Scientific name||Dermochelys coriacea|
|Size||5.9 – 7.2 ft|
|Weight||250 – 700 kg|
|Lifespan||45 – 50 years or more|
|Diet||Jellyfish, cnidarians, tunicates, cephalopods, crustaceans, fish, sea urchins, snails|
Leatherback Sea Turtles are the largest turtle species in the world. They can travel long distances and prefer to stay in the water, the female turtles only coming to the shore to lay eggs. These turtles are also the only species not to have hard shells and scales.
46) Andean Condor
|Scientific name||Vultur gryphus|
|Size||Wingspan: 8.8 – 10 ft
Length: 3.3 – 4.2 ft
|Weight||7.7 – 15 kg|
|Lifespan||Over 70 years|
|Diet||Decaying flesh of rotting animals|
Andean Condors are inhabitants of South America, along the Andes Mountains range. These vultures are scavengers in nature and have the longest wingspan among the raptors. Currently, there are quite a small number of Andean condors left in the world, making them one of the Near Threatened species.
45) Dalmatian Pelican
|Scientific name||Pelecanus crispus|
|Size||Wingspan: 11.5 ft
Length: 5 – 6 ft
|Weight||7 – 9.5 kg|
|Lifespan||35 – 54 years|
|Diet||Common carp, European perch, eels, mullets, common rudds, pike, other fish, amphibians, worms, small water birds, crustaceans|
Though some largest specimens of swans rival the length and weight of the Dalmatian Pelican, these pelicans are noted to be the largest freshwater bird in the world. They are also the largest in the pelican family. The Dalmatian pelicans have a harsh birdcall which becomes sharper and clearer during their mating season.
44) Common Ostrich
|Scientific name||Struthio camelus|
|Size||Height: Male: 6.8 – 9 ft; Female: 5.5 – 6.5 ft
Wingspan: 6.5 ft
|Weight||63 – 140 kg|
|Lifespan||50 – 75 years|
The Common Ostriches are known for being the largest bird species still alive and their flightless nature. They are native to the continent of Africa. The common ostriches are also the fastest birds on land, having an average speed of 34 mph with short bursts of 43 mph.
43) Komodo Dragon
|Scientific name||Varanus komodoensis|
|Size||Male: 8.5 ft; Female: 7.5 ft|
|Weight||Male: 79 – 91 kg; Female: 68 – 73 kg|
|Diet||All kinds of meat, animal carcass, small lizards, snakes, birds, insects|
42) Polar Bear
|Scientific name||Ursus maritimus|
|Size||Male: 4.2 ft
Female: 5.9 – 7.8 ft
|Weight||Male: 450 kg
Female: 150 – 250 kg
|Lifespan||25 – 30 years|
|Diet||Arctic fox, seals|
Native to the Arctic circle, Polar Bears are the only species of bears to be considered as marine animals. They have a hypercarnivorous diet and are very aggressive. Because of climate change and habitat loss, they are currently a Vulnerable species, according to IUCN.
Note: Here, we are taking Grizzly Bear, Pandas and other Black bears in this point.
41) Black Rhinoceros
|Scientific name||Diceros bicornis|
|Size||9 – 12 feet|
|Weight||800 – 1,400 kg|
|Lifespan||35 – 50 years|
The name of the Black Rhinoceroses can be misleading since they are not actually black, but brown or gray in color. They are natives of Africa, inhabiting many countries of the continent. Black rhinos have pointed or hooked lips, leading to their name, hook-lipped rhinoceros.
|Scientific name||Giraffa sp.|
|Size||14.1 – 18.7 ft|
|Weight||828 – 1,192 kg|
|Diet||Vegetation (also chews old bones)|
Giraffes are the tallest animals in the world, their height being a byproduct of their long necks. They prefer to stay in groups and are quite fast, running at the speed up to 35 mph. The spots of their bodies are unique to each individual and have blood vessels under which help them regulate body temperature.
39) Javan Rhinoceros
|Scientific name||Rhinoceros sondaicus|
|Size||Height: 4.6 – 5.6 ft
Length: 6.5 – 13 ft
|Weight||900 – 2,300 kg|
|Lifespan||30 – 45 years|
While every rhino species is facing decreasing numbers, no one is more affected than the Javan Rhinoceros. These natives of Southeast Asia are currently very few in numbers and listed as Critically Endangered. They share the same genus with the Indian rhino but their horns and overall size are smaller than their relatives.
38) Indian Rhinoceros
|Scientific name||Rhinoceros unicornis|
|Size||Height: Male: 5.2 – 6.2 ft; Female: 4.9 – 5.5 ft
Length: Male: 12 ft; Female: 10 – 11 ft
|Weight||Male: 2,200 kg; Female: 1,600 kg|
|Lifespan||35 – 45 years|
Indian Rhinoceroses are natives of the Indian subcontinent and are one of the biggest animals in the world. They are famous for their single, large horn. But due to poaching and the threat of habitat loss, their numbers are decreasing, leading them to be considered a Vulnerable species.
37) White Rhinoceros
|Scientific name||Ceratotherium simum|
|Size||Male: 12 – 13 ft; Female: 11 – 12 ft|
|Weight||Male: 2,300 kg; Female: 1,700 kg|
|Lifespan||40 – 50 years|
White Rhinoceros are the largest living rhinoceros species and the one of the largest mammals in the world. They are currently declared Near Threatened by IUCN. White rhinos aren’t actually white, instead their name comes from the word “weit” which means wide in Afrikaans (Germanic language) and indicates the large mouth of the animal.
36) Slender-Snouted Crocodile
|Scientific name||Mecistops cataphractus|
|Size||7.7 – 13 ft|
|Weight||50 – 230 kg|
|Lifespan||More than 50 years|
|Diet||Fish, invertebrates, large animals|
Another Critically Endangered animal, the Slender-Snouted Crocodiles inhabit the West African countries. Their snouts are lean and very long which they use to hunt fish and small aquatic creatures from water.
|Scientific name||Bos gaurus|
|Size||Height: Male: 6.2 ft
Female: 5.6 ft
Length: 8.2 – 10.10 ft
|Weight||Male: 588 – 1,500 kg
Female: 440 – 1,000 kg
Another nickname for the Gaur is the Indian Bison. They are the largest bovine species and are found in South and Southeast Asia. Gaur are not only very large but they are also among the heaviest mammals in the world, only below elephants, rhinos are giraffes.
|Scientific name||Hippopotamus amphibius|
|Size||Height: 4.9 – 5.4 ft
Length: 6.8 – 16.5 ft
|Weight||1,300 – 3,200 kg|
|Lifespan||40 – 50 years|
Thanks to their semi-aquatic nature, Hippopotamuses are often called river horses. These African natives are one of the biggest animals in the world. They are very aggressive and at times known to fight brutally amongst each other. Though they spend a considerable time in water, they can’t actually swim or float.
33) Lion’s Mane Jellyfish
|Scientific name||Cyanea capillata|
|Size||Diameter: 50 in – 6 ft 7 in
Length: 100 – 120 ft
|Weight||91 – 218 kg|
|Diet||Fish, zooplanktons, smaller jellyfish, sea creatures|
Lion’s Mane Jellyfish is a huge species of jellyfishes whose total length reaches up to an astounding 120 ft, which is longer than a blue whale! This deep sea jellyfish has about 1,200 tentacles in clusters. The jellyfish is not only large but it’s also very dangerous. A single sting of its tentacles causes immense pain.
32) Giant Sunfish
|Scientific name||Mola alexandrini|
|Lifespan||More than 10 years|
|Diet||Jellyfish, brittle stars, small fish, planktons, algae, salps, mollusks|
Giant Sunfish is a species of the Mola genus and often confused with the Ocean Sunfish. They are huge in size and are possibly the largest bony fish. These fish often stay closer to the surface to raise their temperature before diving back into cooler water.
31) Giant Oceanic Manta Ray
|Scientific name||Mobula birostris|
|Size||15 – 30 ft|
|Weight||1,600 – 3,000 kg|
|Lifespan||More than 40 years|
|Diet||copepods, mysids, shrimp, euphausiids, decapod larvae, fish|
Giant Oceanic Manta Ray is currently an Endangered species and the largest ray in the world. They are found all over the world and all types of waters including tropical, subtropical and temperate.
30) Green Anaconda
|Scientific name||Eunectes murinus|
|Size||Length: 9 – 21 ft
Diameter: 12 in
|Weight||30 – 250 kg|
|Lifespan||10 – 20 years|
|Diet||All sorts of large prey|
The Green Anaconda is the heaviest and one of the largest snakes in the world. They are a boa species and native to South America. Green anaconda eats a variety of animals, including reptiles, birds and big mammals. They subdue their prey by constriction.
29) Reticulated Python
|Scientific name||Malayopython reticulatus|
|Size||4.11 – 22.10 ft|
|Weight||1 – 75 kg|
|Lifespan||12 – 20 years|
There is another snake species among the biggest animals in the world and that is the Reticulated Python. These pythons are the longest and one of the heaviest snakes in the world, falling only behind the green anaconda in weight. They are also constrictors and eat a variety of animals.
28) American Alligator
|Scientific name||Alligator mississippiensis|
|Size||Male: 10 – 15 ft
Female: 8.5 ft
|Lifespan||30 – 50 years|
|Diet||All sorts of prey|
American Alligators are quite an intelligent bunch as they have been observed using lures to hunt birds. They are apex predators and prey on every kind of animal. Their genders are determined by temperature during their time in the egg. These alligators are huge and the largest reptiles of North America.
27) Orinoco Crocodile
|Scientific name||Crocodylus intermedius|
|Size||Male: 12 – 16 ft
Female: 9 – 11 ft
|Weight||93 – 225 kg|
|Lifespan||70 – 80 years|
|Diet||Aquatic prey, reptiles, domestic animals, birds, monkeys, deer, common caimans, smaller Orinoco crocodiles|
While the American alligator is the biggest reptile of North America, for South America the spot is taken by the Orinoco Crocodile. These Critically Endangered crocodiles hunt all sorts of prey, the primary being large predatory fish. They might be capable hunters but their biggest threat remains humans.
26) False Gharial
|Scientific name||Tomistoma schlegelii|
|Size||Male: 12 – 16 ft
Female: 10 – 13 ft
|Weight||420 – 590 kg|
|Lifespan||60 – 80 years|
|Diet||Fish, small aquatic animals, all sorts of terrestrial animals|
False Gharials are called so because of their physical resemblance to the gharials, their relatives. They are found in Southeast Asia where they prefer to live in mud holes, swamps, lakes and flooded forests. They are capable predators and prey on both terrestrial and aquatic animals.
|Scientific name||Gavialis gangeticus|
|Size||Male: 9 – 20 ft
Female: 8.5 – 15 ft
|Weight||160 – 977 kg|
|Lifespan||30 – 50 years|
|Diet||Fish, insects, frogs, snakes, turtles, birds, mammals, dead animals|
Gharials are the Critically Endangered relatives of crocodiles, found in Southeast Asia. They get their name from the bulbous growth on the tips of the snouts of male gharials which resembles the round pots known as “ghara” in Hindi. Gharials are very dedicated parents and protective towards their young.
24) Southern Elephant Seal
|Scientific name||Mirounga leonina|
|Size||Male: 16 – 20 ft
Female: 10 ft
|Weight||Male: 2,200 – 4,000 kg
Female: 400 – 900 kg
Southern Elephant Seals are huge creatures and among the biggest animals in the world. They are very social in nature and prefer to stay in groups. The seals are carnivorous and eat mainly squids and fish. They get their name from the proboscis of the males, which resemble an elephant’s trunk.
23) American Crocodile
|Scientific name||Crocodylus acutus|
|Size||Male: 13 – 16 ft
Female: 9.8 ft
|Weight||Male: 400 – 500 kg
Female: 170 kg
|Lifespan||47 – 70 years|
|Diet||All kinds of aquatic and terrestrial prey|
American Crocodiles are carnivorous and opportunistic predators. They prey on all sorts of prey within their reach. These crocodiles are also comfortable in a large variety of habitats, including freshwater, swamp and even saltwater, though juvenile crocodiles can’t endure saltwater. According to IUCN, they are currently a Vulnerable species.
22) Black Caiman
|Scientific name||Melanosuchus niger|
|Size||16 – 20 ft|
|Weight||350 – 1,100 kg|
|Lifespan||50 – 80 years|
|Diet||All sorts of aquatic and terrestrial prey|
Black Caiman are South American natives who are at the top of the food chain. These apex predators have no natural predators for themselves and thus prey on all kinds of animals, no matter how big. They prefer to be warm and like to bask in the sun with mouths open.
21) Nile Crocodile
|Scientific name||Crocodylus niloticus|
|Size||Male: 11 – 16.5 ft; Female: 7 – 13 ft|
|Weight||Male: 150 – 750 kg; Female: 40 – 250 kg|
|Lifespan||50 – 60 years|
|Diet||All sorts of prey|
Nile Crocodiles are the second largest living crocodile in the world, after the Saltwater Crocodile. They are also the largest freshwater predator in the African continent. These crocodiles are extremely dangerous and cause a huge number of human deaths every year.
20) Giant Squid
|Scientific name||Architeuthis dux|
|Size||Male: 33 ft
Female: 39 – 43 ft
|Weight||Male: 150 kg
Female: 275 kg
|Diet||Deep sea fish, squids|
Among all these large vertebrates, the Giant Squid takes its place as one of the biggest animals in the world. It is also the biggest invertebrate in the world. Along with the colossal squids, giant squids have the largest eyes out of all animals, which help them see in the deeper parts of the ocean.
19) Great White Shark
|Scientific name||Carcharodon carcharias|
|Size||Male: 11 – 13 ft
Female: 15 – 16 ft
|Weight||522 – 1,111 kg|
|Diet||Tuna, rays, sharks, whales, dolphins, porpoises, seals, fur seals, sea lions, sea turtles, sea otters, sea birds|
Though “Jaws” have made them famous as frightening creatures, Great White Sharks are in reality quite temperate and rarely prey on humans. Though they have about 300 teeth and their fallen teeth are replaced by new plates; they don’t chew their food. They also prefer to live in warm water.
18) African Forest Elephant
|Scientific name||Loxodonta cyclotis|
|Size||Length: 10 – 13 ft
Height: 6 – 10 ft
|Weight||2 – 7 tonnes|
|Lifespan||60 – 70 years|
African Forest Elephants are the smallest living elephant species. They live in the deep rainforests of Africa and are difficult to come by. Because of their primary diet of fruits, they play an important role in spreading seeds around the forest and are known as the “mega-gardener of the forest.” Sadly, they are also Critically Endangered.
17) Beluga Whale
|Scientific name||Delphinapterus leucas|
|Size||Male: 11 – 18 ft
Female: 10 – 13.5 ft
|Weight||Male: 1,100 – 1,600 kg
Female: 700 – 1,200 kg
|Diet||Arctic cods, rose fish, Greenland halibut, northern shrimp, Coho salmon, capelin, smelt, flounder, herring, crabs, soles, sculpins, squids, clams, octopuses, sea snails, bristle worms|
16) Saltwater Crocodile
|Scientific name||Crocodylus porosus|
|Size||Male: 20 – 21 ft
Female: 9 – 11 ft
|Weight||Male: 1,000 – 1,300 kg
Female: 76 – 200 kg
|Lifespan||70 – 80 years|
|Diet||Fish, turtles, goannas, snakes, cattle, birds, buffalos, wild boar, mud crabs|
Saltwater Crocodiles are the largest living reptile and have the strongest bite in the world. They have been on this planet for a very long time, going back as far as the dinosaurs. These crocodiles are apex predators and will prey on anything in their reach. While they might hunt underwater, they will only feed above the surface.
15) Orca (Killer Whale)
|Scientific name||Orcinus orca|
|Size||Males: 20 – 26 ft
Female: 16 – 23 ft
|Weight||Male: 6 tonnes
Female: 3 – 4 tonnes
|Lifespan||Males: 10 – 30 years (in captivity)
Female: 50 – 80 years
|Diet||Fish, cephalopods, mammals, seabirds, sea turtles|
Though Orcas are famous as killer whales, they are not actually whales, rather dolphins. Orcas are not only one of the biggest animals in the world, they are also the most widespread mammal on the planet. They also have the second largest brain out of all marine mammals.
14) Asian Elephant
|Scientific name||Elephas maximus|
|Size||Length: 18 – 21 ft
Height: 8 – 9 ft
|Weight||3 – 5 tonnes|
|Lifespan||60 – 80 years|
Asian Elephants are the second largest of the three living elephant species and smaller only to the African bush elephant. Apart from the size, there are some differences between the Asian elephant and its African counterparts. For example, the ears of the Asian elephants are smaller and they have one extra toenail on each foot.
13) African Bush Elephant
|Scientific name||Loxodonta africana|
|Size||Length: 24 ft
Height: 13 ft
|Weight||3 – 6 tonnes|
|Lifespan||70 – 75 years|
The African Bush Elephant is the largest elephant species and one of the biggest animals in the world. They are also known as African Savannah Elephants. These elephants are the largest terrestrial animals in the world. Regrettably, they are now an Endangered species because of poaching and habitat destruction.
12) Basking Shark
|Scientific name||Cetorhinus maximus|
|Size||23 – 36 ft|
|Diet||Zooplanktons, copepods, very small fish|
Armed with a frightening set of teeth, Basking Sharks are the second largest fish in the world. Despite their appearance, they are mild-mannered creatures and are not predatory. They are filter feeders and their diet primarily consists of zooplanktons and tiny fish.
11) Whale Shark
|Scientific name||Rhincodon typus|
|Size||26 – 59 ft|
|Lifespan||80 – 130 years|
|Diet||Copepods, krills, fish, fish eggs, squids, crabs|
The position of the largest fish in the world is taken by the Whale Shark. Like their smaller shark friend, they are also filter feeders. While their name contains two different animals, they are in fact a shark, not a whale.
10) Gray Whale
|Scientific name||Eschrichtius robustus|
|Size||42 – 49 ft|
|Lifespan||55 – 70 years|
|Diet||Benthic crustaceans, amphipods, isopods|
Whales are undoubtedly the biggest creatures out there and from here on, the list completely consists of whales. Gray Whales are one of those large animals. Like all whales, they are also bottom feeders. Adult male gray whales are slightly smaller than adult females.
9) Humpback Whale
|Scientific name||Megaptera novaeangliae|
|Size||46 – 60 ft|
|Weight||36 – 40 tonnes|
|Lifespan||80 – 90 years|
|Diet||Krill, herring, capelin, sand lances, Atlantic mackerel|
The name of Humpback Whales comes from the distinctive hump at the front of their small dorsal fins. The geographical distribution of these whales are wide and ranges around the world. They also migrate very long distances.
8) Bowhead Whale
|Scientific name||Balaena mysticetus|
|Size||49 – 62 ft|
|Weight||54 – 100 tonnes|
|Lifespan||Over 200 years|
|Diet||Copepods, amphipods, crustaceans|
Bowhead Whales, true to their name, have huge heads. In fact, their skull takes up about a third of their body. They use their skulls to break sea ice. These whales also have the thickest blubber out of all whales.
7) North Atlantic Right Whale
|Scientific name||Eubalaena glacialis|
|Size||43 – 52 ft|
|Weight||40 – 70 tonnes|
|Diet||Copepods, krills, pteropods, larval barnacles|
North Atlantic Right Whales are the smallest of the three species of right whales. During the 1890s, these whales faced near extinction because of hunting by commercial whalers.
6) Sei Whale
|Scientific name||Balaenoptera borealis|
|Size||Male: 45 – 61 ft
Female: 49 – 64 ft
|Weight||Male: 15 – 17 tonnes
Female: 18.5 tonnes
|Diet||Copepods, krills, other zooplanktons, small fish|
Sei Whale is another Baleen whale which is one of the biggest animals in the world. They can swim very fast, up to the speed of 34 mph. Sei whales have a distinct way of diving where they just sink below the surface without arching or displaying their flukes.
5) Sperm Whale
|Scientific name||Physeter macrocephalus|
|Size||Male: 49 – 62 ft
Female: 35 – 39 ft
|Weight||Male: 41 – 53 tonnes
Female: 14 tonnes
|Lifespan||70 years or more|
|Diet||Squids, octopuses, demersal rays, sharks|
Sperm Whales have the biggest brain out of all living animals. They are also the largest toothed whales. Their name comes from the semi-liquid substance in their head which was initially believed to be sperms.
4) Southern Right Whale
|Scientific name||Eubalaena australis|
|Size||49 – 59 ft|
|Weight||80 – 90 metric tons|
|Lifespan||Over 100 years|
Southern Right Whales inhibit the waters of the Southern Hemisphere. The calluses on their bodies are unique to each whale and act as identifiers. They are also very calm and slow in nature.
3) North Pacific Right Whale
|Scientific name||Eubalaena japonica|
|Size||49 – 60 ft|
|Weight||50 – 100 tonnes|
The North Pacific Right Whales are an Endangered species of Baleen whales. They are huge in size and make a wide range of noises, dubbed as screams, moans, groans, pulses and belches by scientists.
2) Fin Whale
|Scientific name||Balaenoptera physalus|
|Size||61 – 66 ft|
|Weight||57 – 120 metric tons|
|Lifespan||94 – 140 years|
|Diet||Small fish, squids, copepods, krills|
Fin Whales are also a species of Baleen whales and the second largest animal in the world. They are solitary in nature and prefer to roam alone. Their only known natural predator is the killer whale.
1) Blue Whale
|Scientific name||Balaenoptera musculus|
|Size||72.1 – 108 ft|
|Weight||83.5 – 100 tonnes|
|Lifespan||80 – 90 years|
The biggest animal in the world is the Blue Whale. This deep sea whale is not only the biggest living animal but it is also the biggest animal ever to have lived on Earth. Just their tongues weigh as much as an elephant. Blue whales are also the loudest animal on this planet; their sounds are around 188 decibel which is louder than a jet engine.
There are some unbelievably huge animals we have in our planet. But very sadly, a lot of them are facing habitat loss and decreasing numbers. There are many species here that are either endangered or vulnerable, and some are even critically endangered. It’s unfortunate that humans are responsible for this. We must protect them to keep balance in our world. We’ll stop here for now. Go visit our website for more exciting contents like this.
Wikipedia, Animals Comparisons, The Nature Conservancy, Oceana, NOAA Fisheries, Ocean, Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute, San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance Library, The Animal Files, Britannica, NT Government (Be Crocwise), Animal Spot, Kidadl, Animal Diversity Web, Australian Antarctic Program, LA Zoo, PetMD, The Peregrine Fund, The Dodo, Treehugger, WorldWildLife, Factins, NWF Blog, ZSL, Though Co.
Anamika has a fascination with all living things. Being a Zoology student, she loves to know new interesting things about animals. She’s also a very keen fan of manga and anime. Writing is her passion, and writing about her favorite things is her boost of serotonin.