9 of the World's Smallest Living Animals

The oldest ruby-throated hummingbird ever recorded lived 9 years. These little birds survive 3 to 5 years, making them one of the shortest-lived species.


Weasels eat meat. They can live 6 years in captivity but just 1-2 in the wild. They make up for their short lifespan by having three litters of 13 kits each.

Least Weasel

Dragonflies have 5,000 species and a four- to six-month adult lifespan. The harsh climate usually shortens their lifespan.


The Labord's chameleon has the shortest lifespan among tetrapods. After hatching, these lizards only live 4 to 5 months.

Labord's chameleon

Honey bee lifespan depends on workload. Male drone bees only live 5-6 weeks in the summer but 5 months or longer in the winter.

Honey bee

Even in warm temperatures and ideal settings, house flies only last a month. In houses with plenty of food, flies can live 30 days.

House flies

The queen can live 2-6 years, while the workers only 5 weeks. Male drone ants are among the shortest-lived castes, dying shortly after mating.


The mosquito lifecycle lasts 4 to 30 days, with pupae becoming adults in 2-3 days. Male mosquitoes live 6 to 10 days as adults, shorter than females.


Rare and short-lived, the American sand-burrowing mayfly. Adults only live 5 to 2 hours to reproduce. Mayflies live the shortest lives.


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