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The Heaviest Animals

The world's heaviest animals – presented in one well-arranged chart! Plus additional exciting infos! If we had simply made up a top ten list of the heaviest animals, neither the polar bear nor the leatherback sea turtle would appear in it. All ten slots would be occupied by whales exclusively. That's true!

But why? The blue whale is not the only heavy whale. Right whales such as the North Pacific right whale, the southern right whale, the North Atlantic right whale, and the Greenland right whale (to mention just a few) are much heavier than all the other animals, too. They weigh between 50 and 100 tons. That's why we've picked records from the most diverse animal orders and genera.

Top 20 Heaviest Animals in the World

Heaviest animal Blue whale 190 tons
Heaviest shark Whale shark 12-20 tons
Heaviest terrestrial mammal Elephant 5-6 tons
Heaviest even-toed ungulate Hippo 4.5 tons
Heaviest seal Elephant seal 4 tons
Heaviest odd-toed ungulate Rhino 2.3 tons
Heaviest bony fish Ocean sunfish 2.3 tons
Heaviest reptile Saltwater crocodile 2 tons
Heaviest reptile Leatherback sea turtle 2019 lbs (916 kg)
Heaviest bear Polar bear 1984 lbs (900 kg)
Heaviest bird (flightless) Ostrich 34 lbs (156 kg)
Heaviest snake Green anaconda 214 lbs (97.5 kg)
Heaviest rodent Capybara 200 lbs (91 kg)
Heaviest penguin Emperor penguin 99.2 lbs (45 kg)
Heaviest crustacean American lobster 44 lbs (20 kg)
Heaviest bird (able to fly) Kori bustard 48.5 lbs (22 kg)
Heaviest bird of prey Andean condor 33 lbs (15 kg)
Heaviest pelican Dalmatian pelican 33 lbs (15 kg)
Heaviest starfish Thromidia catalai 13.2 lbs (6 kg)
Heaviest frog Goliath frog 6.6 lbs (3 kg)
Heaviest beetle Goliath beetle 3.8 oz (110 g)

Polar Bear Polar Bear - Photo: Ondrej Prosicky/Shutterstock


Comparisons and Examples

In movies even big animals often look rather sweet and not as chubby and heavy as they really are. A polar bear and the leatherback sea turtle alone are as heavy as a small car. Have you ever tried to lift a car with your hands? Then you know what this means.

A blue whale can weigh up to 190 tons. For comparison: A blue whale weighs as much as 10 city buses, 95 helicopters or 2,000 human beings. This is still hard to imagine, isn’t it?

How Do You Measure the Weight of a Whale?

Personal scales (those in the bathroom) mostly can only measure weights of up to 309 lbs (140 kg). So how do you measure the weight of a giraffe or an elephant? For this purpose the animals are led onto a weighbridge. These devices are designed for weights of up to 60 tons.

So far so good, but how does it work with a blue whale? It is much heavier than 60 tons. And how can you get the animal out of the water to put it on the weighbridge? The exact weight of living whales can usually only be estimated. Yet you can measure the weight of stranded (dead) animals by means of a crane scale.

The Largest Dinosaur

Dinosaurs were the largest and heaviest terrestrial animals that ever lived. But even they cannot compete with the blue whale. With up to 100 tons, the Argentinosaurus is considered to be the heaviest dino. Scientists have been arguing about the exact weight for ages, but they can only revert to the dino’s bones to get a rough idea.


Elephant Seal Elephant Seal - Photo: Phill Danze/Shutterstock


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