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Tardigrades occur throughout the world, from the Himalayas, above 6000 m, to the deep sea, below 4000 m, and from the polar regions to the equator.
Tardigrades range from 0.3 to 0.5 mm. They are able to survive in extreme environments. They can survive temperatures close to absolute zero, or 0 Kelvin (−273 °C), temperatures as high as 151 °C, they can survive more than 1200 times the atmospheric pressure, 1000 times more radiation than other animals and almost a decade without water. In 2007, tardigrades have being taken into lower orbit and exposed to the vacuum of space (exposing them to extremely low pressure) for about 10 days, to later return to Earth alive.
The animals are one of the few groups of species that are capable of reversibly suspending their metabolism and going into a state of cryptobiosis (a sort of stasis). While in this state their metabolism lowers to less than 0.01% of normal and their water content can drop to 1% of normal. And all that is needed to revive the animal is some drops of water and it will reanimate itself in less than an hour.