In a study published Thursday in Science, Bushnell and his colleagues report that the species actually has the longest known lifespan of any vertebrate on the planet. While their dating methods have a wide margin of error, they estimate that the sharks may live for four centuries or more. Even their most conservative estimates for lifespan – around 272 years –puts the species well ahead of the current record of the bowhead whale (Balaena mysticetus), which has an estimated longevity of 211 years. The Greenland shark may be surpassed only by a 507-year-old clam. Read More.