The natural world is a stunning place but can also be a deadly one, especially for us humans. While we are top of the food chain thanks to our brains and technological power, there are many animals out there who pose a real threat to us. They can easily cause us serious injury or death due to their venom or size so it is worth giving them a wide berth. While many will only attack when threatened, some are aggressive by nature and so can be a real headache if you stumble across them by mistake.
Here’s ten of the most dangerous animals out there today:
10 – Great White Shark
This is one of the top predators in the world and certainly within the ocean. Although not the largest shark out there, it is certainly the most aggressive to humans and dangerous. It has a gigantic mouth full of needle-sharp, triangular teeth that can easily kill or maim a human in seconds. Its speed through the water and ability to surprise prey with an attack from below make it a really fearsome beast.
Although it has been thought they attack humans be mistake as they can think we are their main prey items, it can still have deadly consequences. Even a light bite from one of these animals can sever a limb and the resulting blood-loss can easily be fatal.
09 – Stonefish
The Stonefish is one of the most poisonous fish on the planet and so deserves a place here. The other factors that make them so deadly are twofold. Firstly, they move very quickly so are hard to avoid if you see them. Secondly, they are very well disguised (hence the name!) so people can stand or touch them by mistake. They are very hard to see against the ocean floor, which can lead to humans being stung by them when disturbed.
While they are not an aggressive animal per se, they will react by using their venomous spines if attacked. Of course, it may not be someone’s intention to attack them but you could still end up being stung anyway. The venom is very potent and could cost you a limb or even kill you!
08 – Hyena
Known as a scavenger, the Hyena is a very aggressive and dangerous animal. It normally waits for other animals to be killed and will then move in to eat the flesh. Although they can operate alone, they are also found in packs which makes them even more troubling. Able to hunt also, they will do so if hungry and no dead corpses are to be found.
The danger for humans is that during times like world wars when it is dead humans that are left outside for them to feed on, they develop a taste for human flesh. Obviously, this is a problem as they will then start to hunt humans and see us a prey item. There have been cases where humans have been pursued by hungry Hyena’s so they are certainly an animal to be wary of.
07 – Puffer Fish
If there is one animal some may not be too familiar with on this list it is the Puffer Fish. It is actually considered a culinary delicacy, particularly in Asia, where top-class restaurants serve it. Chefs have to go on a special course to learn how to cook it though so they don’t poison the customers. The reason for this is that the Puffer Fish has very powerful venom inside it so has to be prepared very carefully to remove that.
This venom is bad news for humans as it causes paralysis in your breathing apparatus which naturally leads to death. In their natural habitat, the Puffer Fish uses this to defend itself from predators when they attack. So, although they look cute, don’t go anywhere near them if you spot them when swimming in the ocean.
06 – Deathstalker Scorpion
When something has a name like this, you know it is going to be one tough cookie! With a yellow body, it is actually quite pretty but it literally carries a sting in its tail. It is estimated that this one species is responsible for 75% of all scorpion deaths each year. This figure is just staggering and shows why we need to be vigilant for it.
It seems that the bites or stings they give are particularly concerning for children who seem more susceptible. Having said that, adults have died also so it’s best for everyone to just avoid them. As with other animals, the bite is extremely painful so even if you survive, you will know about it for a while afterwards.
05 – Siafu Ants
Also known as Driver Ants, these may be small but still pack a punch. Coming in swarms of up to 50,000,000, this is their main weapon. Even if one of these ants is under attack, the whole swam reacts as one unit to overcome the threat. You can imagine the problems this has caused people who may be out on a walk and step on one by mistake. Before you know it, you have the other 50 million chasing after you for revenge!
Although not poisonous, they are very hard to get off when they latch on and have a painful bite. Once they have swarmed all over the body of a victim, it really is game over. They will stay latched on your body with their jaws clamped shut even if you tear them in half. For the size of them and the sudden way they could swarm, they are very impressive yet deadly animals.
04 – Cape Buffalo
Found in the grasslands of Africa, this is one grumpy beast! Known for its aggression, the Cape Buffalo often charge at victims with no reason, similar in some ways to the Black Mamba snake. Although they do not have venom like other animals on our list, they do have one thing that makes them highly dangerous. Size!
The largest Cape Buffalo can reach up to 2,000 pounds and run at speeds of 40 miles per hour. It is obvious that this weight at that speed is not something you want to be hit by! Fierce predators, they have been known to charge vehicles and continue to attack even when shot. No-one is safe from them in their habitat, not even big cats like Lions.
03 – Black Mamba
Probably the most feared and infamous snake on the planet is the Black Mamba. Known for its speed and quick striking ability, it is also highly aggressive. Interestingly, the name doesn’t come from the snakes colour which is greyer. It in fact stems from the black interior of its mouth that people see as it comes into bite them.
There are many cases of humans being chased for long distances by this animal and with the speed they travel at, it’s no joke. Quick to anger, this can sometimes be with little or no provocation so if you do come across one be very careful. The other intimidating thing about this creature is that it can rise up on its tail to come face-to-face with all but the tallest person. This allows them to strike direct to the face which makes it hard to apply a tourniquet or have time to source the anti-venom.
02 – Cone Snail
Proving that it’s not just sharks and jellyfish you have to watch out for when in the sea is this little fellow. Another ocean dweller to keep an eye out for, this one can be serious bad news for any humans who come across its path. You wouldn’t think it to look at as it seems like a normal snail – this is probably where most of the problems come from with people picking them up thinking they are not dangerous.
It may look like any other snail but it is in fact deadly! Just one drop of the Cone Snail’s venom can kill up to twenty people which shows just why we need to be careful of it. The other snag with this animal is that there is no anti-venom for its poison so once you have been stung, you will almost certainly be dead in a few minutes.
01 – Box Jellyfish
As anyone who has ever been to the beach knows all jellyfish are best avoided. Most will give a painful sting if you step on or touch them so be warned! The box jellyfish however is the most dangerous among this type of animal.
It may look too menacing but this see-through sea predator is the most venomous animal on the whole earth! It’s not just humans who have to beware either – the box jellyfish can be equally poisonous to other species of animal too. The upshot is that if you get stung by this creature, you will most likely die! If you do manage to survive the pain you will find yourself in for a long time will be very, very bad.
While you should not worry too much the next time you’re swimming in the sea or out on a hike, it is always worth keeping an eye on what’s around you. By doing so, you will be able to steer clear of any danger before it can cause you any harm. Luckily, the above animals are not going to be a problem for the majority of people so there’s no need to have nightmares!