From ferocious sharks and alligators to living organisms as inert as a sea sponge, species both aggressive and tacit have stuck around long-term.

All they share is an ancestry that goes back longer than we could possibly fathom. To put the life span of some of these species into perspective, the modern form of humans has a lineage that only traces back 200,000 years, with our earliest ancestors dating back to about six million years ago.

In all of these estimated timelines, you can probably quibble on a million years here and there, but they still paint a picture of some pretty old species.

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