While I am a native English speaker, I'm no English major so I'll try to explain my thoughts on this as succinctly as possible.
For most other translations of German verbs to English, I would agree. You would be able to use both the present simple and present continuous and it would mean the same thing. "I walk to the park." vs "I am walking to the park."
However, this sentence is a bit different. The best way I can think of to describe it is as a declarative statement. It's not talking about a specific set of turtles and cats. Instead, it's making a matter-of-fact statement about all turtles and cats that has no past, present or future. It just is.
For are living to make sense to me, it would require some auxiliary info or definite articles.
"The turtles are living longer than the cats."
"Turtles are living longer than cats these days."
You'll notice I didn't include indefinite articles (and it's not because the nouns used are plural). The following sentence might be grammatically correct, but is logically incorrect.
- "A turtle is living longer than a cat."
Instead, you would say:
- "A turtle
liveslonger than a cat."
Unfortunately, the only examples of this type of sentence that I can think of off-hand outside the given sentence come from the infinitive "to be". This makes it harder to explain because present continuous uses some variation of "to be" as well. I wanted to give some examples, but I feel they might detract from the message and convolute things.
Do Turtles Love longer than cats? as well :-) if cats have nine lives it may even out - turtles can mate for up to 12 hours - impressive https://seaturtleexploration.com/mating-and-dating-in-the-world-of-turtles/
long e like the long ehh sound in Japanese anime, ie like ea in sea, ei like I. We've never used the ay sound - it's an English invention. I gueds because there's no similar noise in the English language. If you say stuff in a heavy Scottish accent you have the long e sound quite often , or so my friend informed me.