Lifespans of Aardvarks: How Long They Live

Lifespans of Aardvarks: How Long They Live


Aardvarks, also known as Orycteropus afer, are a species of mammal found in parts of Africa. These burrowing animals are renowned for their long snouts and are considered to be a unique species of the Afrotherian group. Aardvarks are nocturnal and spend most of their days underground. They feed mainly on termites and ants and can often be found near ant hills as they search for food. But how long do these fascinating creatures live?

Average Lifespan

The average lifespan of an aardvark is around 10-12 years in the wild. In captivity, aardvarks can live for up to 15-20 years. This is largely due to the fact that captive aardvarks are provided with a more stable and consistent environment, which allows them to live longer than their wild counterparts.

Factors Impacting Lifespan

There are a few factors that can impact an aardvark’s lifespan. For instance, their diet plays an important role in their overall health and can determine how long they live. Aardvarks are insectivores, so their diet consists of termites and ants. If they are not able to find enough food, their lifespan may be significantly reduced. Additionally, aardvarks are vulnerable to predation; lions, leopards, and hyenas are some of the predators they must be on the lookout for.


Aardvarks reproduce mainly during the rainy season. During this time, the female aardvark will give birth to a single offspring. This offspring will stay with the mother for six to eight months before becoming independent. By this time, the offspring will be able to feed and take care of itself, and will soon be ready to start its own family.

Interesting Facts

Aardvarks are incredibly strong and can dig through hard soil in seconds. They are also known to swim and even climb trees if needed. Additionally, aardvarks have a unique tongue which they use to scoop up ants and termites. Their tongues are covered in sticky saliva which helps them capture their prey.


Aardvarks are an incredible species of mammal native to Africa. Although their lifespans are usually between 10-12 years in the wild, they can live for up to 15-20 years in captivity. Their diet and other factors such as predation can also play a role in determining their lifespan. Aardvarks are also known for their unique adaptations such as their long snouts, sticky tongues, and impressive digging abilities.

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