Dietary restriction is known to promote longevity in a variety of eukaryotic organisms. Most studies of dietary restriction have been performed on animals bred for many generations under conditions that differ substantially from their natural environment, raising the possibility that some apparent beneficial effects of dietary restriction are due to adaptation to laboratory conditions. To address this question in an invertebrate model, we determined the effect of dietary restriction by bacterial deprivation on life span in five different wild-derived Caenorhabditis elegans strains and two strains of the related species Caenorhabditis remanei. Longevity was enhanced in each of the wild-derived C. elegans strains, in most cases to a degree similar to that observed in N2, the standard laboratory strain. Both strains of C. remanei were substantially longer lived any of the C. elegans isolates, produced larger brood sizes, and retained the ability to produce offspring for a longer period of time. Dietary restriction failed to increase mean life span in one C. remanei isolate, but significantly increased the maximum life span of both C. remanei strains. Thus, we find no evidence that adaptation to laboratory conditions has significantly altered the aging process in C. elegans under either standard or food-restricted conditions.