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Question of the Week:

Why do turtles live so long? 

Dear Reader,

You’re right, turtles and tortoises live a lot longer than most other animals. If you were a turtle, you might live for more than 150 years. One giant Galápagos tortoise named Harriet even lived to be more than 170 years old, said my friend Donna Holmes.

Holmes is a professor and a member of the Center for Reproductive Biology, where scientists at the University of Idaho and Washington State University work to tackle big questions about aging and animal lifespans.

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Get the latest answers, activities, videos and more from Dr. Wendy Sue Universe and her friends at Washington State University.

Why does stuff decay?

You’re right. It can take a really long time for some things to decay.

If we buried an apple peel in the backyard it might only take a few weeks to break down into the soil. But if we buried a plastic water bottle, it would probably still be there hundreds of years from now.

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