Top 10 Most DANGEROUS ANIMALS In AUSTRALIA
Each year, thousands of people visit Australia to enjoy its beautiful beaches and spectacular outback. However, the land down under is also known for something more sinister – its vast array of killer creatures – and that’s what we’re interested in. For this installment, we'll be once again omitting humans from our list.
With roughly ten people dying per year, the honey bee causes more deaths in Australia than spiders, snakes and sharks combined. Bees and wasps are responsible for 33% of all admissions to the hospital due to a bite or sting compared to spiders and snakes, which are responsible for 30% and 15%, respectively. If you’re caught by the bee’s barbed stinger, you’ll probably just suffer pain and swelling, unless you’re allergic. Then you can expect your airway to close up and die from asphyxiation if you don't seek immediate medical attention. Even if you’re not allergic, disturbing a nest can lead to deadly mass attacks. Now let's watch some bees mess up some spiders!
Aussies love dogs: they make movies about them, they have landmarks dedicated to them, and one creepy town even has a pet cemetery devoted to them. But it seems that the love isn’t always mutual. Responsible for approximately three deaths a year, dog attacks prove that literally everything in Australia has a taste for human flesh. Even more frightening, 78% of these occurrences are committed by family pets.
‘The Saltie’ is the largest living reptile on earth and is responsible for around two to three deaths per year, although that number is on the rise. The largest authenticated croc held in captivity measured in at 6.17 meters or about 20.24 feet, and weighed an incredible 2,370-pounds or roughly 1,075-kilograms. Saltwater crocodiles are as happy in the sea as they are in fresh water and swamps, so you’re never safe if you’re near water. They’re opportunistic hunters and will eat anything that nears their murky depths.
Eastern Brown Snake
Although the Inland Taipan has the most powerful venom of any snake, the Eastern Brown snake is fast, aggressive, bad tempered, and nervy. Responsible for half of all snake deaths in Australia, at least two people succumb to their attacks each year. Many victims have confirmed that their initial bite is almost painless - often times were even unaware they were bitten at all. If you don’t get to that all-important anti-venom quickly, you’ll fall victim to paralysis and uncontrollable bleeding, eventually leading to death - often in less than an hour.
Sydney Funnel Web Spider
Pure aggression and venom twice as powerful as cyanide makes this eight-legged brute an Australian joy! With fangs as long as some snakes’, they’ve been known to pierce through fingernails and even leather shoes. Funnel Webs are sensitive to light, so they do what they can to keep out of the sun. In residential areas, piles of bricks and logs are popular hiding places, but shoes are a favorite, too. On average, 2 people died per year before an anti-venom was introduced in the 1980’s, but, since death can occur within 15 minutes, a swift response and identification of the arachnid are vital to survival.
With the second most powerful venom of any creature, it’s easy to see why this fearsome sea dweller is often listed as the most dangerous creature down under. Their sixty-or-so tentacles grow up to ten feet or three meters in length each, and every tentacle has roughly 5,000 stinging cells. The agonizing pain of their sting causes a person to go into shock, often causing cardiac arrest within minutes, which makes getting back to shore by yourself nearly impossible. Like the Irukandji jellyfish, Box Jellyfish will kill 1 to 2 people on average annually.
Responsible for roughly four to ten attacks annually and with a fatality rate of roughly 25%, sharks aren’t quite the killers that the movies make them out to be. All of the “Big Three” can be found along Australia’s coastline, and although great white and tiger sharks are thought to have caused more deaths, it’s actually the unpredictable bull shark that should make you nervous. These bullies are happy to stray into freshwater and were even seen window-shopping in the streets of Brisbane during heavy flooding in 2010.
Responsible for the deaths of one or two people on average annually, this smaller relative of the box jellyfish packs a punch that is said to start off mild but slowly grow into a pain that courses through the victim's body. As tiny as the size of your thumbnail, you’d think twice to mess with these little creatures again if you survive your first encounter. Stings bring on Irukandji syndrome, marked by symptoms including lower back pain, cramps, sweating, anxiety, and nausea.
This ultra-venomous breed of scorpionfish is known for being almost impossible to spot thanks to their stone-like appearance. Poor, unsuspecting beach-goers often fall prey to the camouflaged stonefish, and accidentally stepping on one is far from a pleasant experience. The neurotoxin that they release is so painful, victims have demanded that the afflicted limb be amputated to end their misery. Although deaths from stonefish are rare, they’ve earned a place on this list for the frequency of their attacks as their anti-venom is the second most frequently administered in Australia.
Don’t be fooled by their bright and bubbly appearance, these colorful creatures are deadly. Packed with enough venom to kill ten healthy adults, their weapon, known as teTROdotoxin, is also around 1200 times deadlier than cyanide. The good news, there has only been two confirmed deaths caused by this vibrant octopod, and, because of their docile nature, most attacks occur while trying to disturb their habitat.