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Sitting Still

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Studies have revealed that olm salamanders sit at a place for years together. These creatures millions of years ago moved to underwater caves and evolved into the pale, blind, foot-long creatures known today.

Zoologist Gergely Balázs of Eötvös Loránd University in Budapest and his colleagues began searching for olms about 10 years ago. They started to suspect that they are seeing the same olms in the same spots each time. So they used an injectable liquid marker to tag 26 olms. A unique marking pattern was used for each olm. It was found most of them didn’t seem to move more than 10 meters from their original spots over several years.

This lack of movement helps to conserve energy over a life span that can last for roughly 100 years. The salamanders can go 10 years without eating.

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