The shortest life in the world.

Researchers believe the record for shortest adult life span belongs to the female mayfly called Dolania americana. After spending a year or more living on the bottom of a stream in its aquatic nymph form, it emerges as a flying adult — and lives for less than five minutes. During its brief adult life, the mayfly must find a mate, copulate, and lay its eggs back into the water from which it came.

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