A new type of water bear discovered by a team of researchers at the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia in Italy can survive nearly any condition, including air deprivation. The microscopic animals can enter a deep resting state when water is not available.

The creatures really are tiny, with males only about a quarter of a millimeter long, and females are about 50 percent larger than that.

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Researchers hope to use these creatures to better understand how animals reached the far southern continent.

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