The Cheetah signifies speed and stealth. Automobiles, helicopters and Locomotives have been named after the lithe feline to signify speed. However literally speaking it is not the fastest animal on land if you consider its body size. Confused? What if I say that the puny sized Mite beats the Cheetah as the fastest animal on Earth? Un- believable you say but it is true like the adage, ‘Truth is stranger than fiction’.
Recent research done on the South California land mite has revealed that it not only beats the Cheetah in speed but also outran it. South California land mite has been named Paratarsotomus macropalpis and not much has been known about it. But how exactly the conclusion was reached that the mite is faster than the Cheetah? Continue reading to know more!
When we talk about the fastest animal on the Earth we talk about Cheetah which can run an impressive 60 miles per hour. However when it comes to body length, the humble mite far outclasses the Cheetah in speed as well as endurance. The Cheetah at 60 mph manages 116 body lengths per second whereas the mite covers 322 body lengths per second. The research is very important in a sense that it will help in a better understanding of the physics which helps such animals accomplish such high speeds.
According to Jonathan Wright, Ph.D., a Prof. of biology at Pomona College, the stride frequency and the speed is proportional to the body size and increases with the decrease of the animal size. The next step is to ascertain whether there is an upper limit to the relative speed or the stride frequency.