I was searching for a topic to research for this week, and found this article which I thought might interest some of you and relates to our last lecture. A 34,000 year old bacteria
was found alive in Death Valley
These bacteria are not doing anything other than maintaining themselves: "They're alive, but they're not using any energy to swim around, they're not reproducing". Depending on algae for food these bacteria have managed to survive for 34,000 years and are one of the oldest life forms found on Earth. Sweet!
This discovery was published in the January 2011 issues of Geological Society Today, and the paper can be found here.