We live on a planet that is teeming with different animals, landscapes, people, and places. Earth is a beautiful place with a rich and complex history on every inch of its soil. However, beneath all of this beauty is danger that always lurks — sometimes in the most surprising of places. We decided to take a look at the animal kingdom and find out who the most dangerous and deadly creatures were. Keep on reading if you want to fear going on your next camping trip or taking a swim at the beach. Listed below are the 12 deadliest animals in the entire world for your reading enjoyment!
If you watched the Stephen King movie Cujo then you probably grew up with a fear of big dogs. In fact, you probably insisted that every dog you came across be pushed through dog behavior training at dog training schools. Well, Cujo looks like a tiny puppy next to natures largest carnivore — the Polar Bear. The Polar Bear may be used as a clever marketing ploy by Coca Cola but the reality of this beautiful, dangerous animal is far more alarming. Polar Bears have no known predators to be worried about and they will eat anything that has flesh — including other Polar Bears. Polar Bears don’t have many human kills credited to them each year but that is likely due to their remote location. Rest assured if you find yourself cornered by one, your moments are likely numbered.
We’re going to step away from the absolutely deadly and look at a creature that is just pretty darn deadly: the Lynx. While you may think your big tabby is tough and has the finest cat health care, you would absolutely be shocked by what a Lynx would do to it. The Lynx is considered a ‘medium sized cat’ but it has the ability to track down and kill animals as large as deer. The Lynx is located across Europe as well as North America and the cat is considered a protected species in many countries. There is a concerted effort by the European Endangered Species Programme to try to bring back a specific iteration, the Iberian Lynx, to the wild through in zoo breeding.
Imagine that you are taking a beautiful stroll with a guide in the forests of Honduras or Costa Rica when you see nothing more than a tiny, black ant climb up your leg. Now, if you were in America this would warrant no larger reaction than a swat at your pants and a cursory glance to make sure that you were covered anywhere else. In South America, however, you have to pray that you did not just run into the Bullet Ant. Scientifically known as the Paraponera, the Bullet Ant is one of the most painful insects you can run across in the entire world. A single bite from a single Bullet Ant feels similar to the shock you’d feel from sticking your finger into a 240 volt outlet. The pain is instantaneous and so strong that you’ll drop where you stand. Now imagine an entire colony of these creatures crawling all over you and we bet you’ll be on the first cheap flight away from South America.
When we look into the ocean we make the mistake of thinking that it is the giant creatures, well below the depths of the sea, that we must be most afraid of. While there is some truth to this fear, you are far more likely to have a deadly encounter with something so seemingly harmless — like a jellyfish. Jellyfish in general are known to cause major issues with beach goers and sea divers. These issues can range from painful to downright deadly. The Box Jellyfish is, perhaps, the most deadly of the entire bunch. Box Jellyfish are also known as Sea Wasps and they can be found in most major oceans, including the waters off of California. They are aggressive creatures that hunt small prey and their toxins are deadly to just about every living creature on Earth — including us.
More than just a nickname for the Laker’s Kobe Bryant, the Black Mamba is considered one of the scariest and deadliest venomous snakes on the planet. The Black Mamba is primarily located in Africa and it gets its name thanks to the color of its mouth, something you’ll never wish to see up close. Black Mambas are highly feared due to their aggressive nature and deadly bite. A single bite can cause a human to collapse within half of an hour and if not treated with anti-venom in the next 10 – 15 hours death is all but certain. Black Mambas are known for their stunningly fast striking ability. This is not the kind of snake you want to stumble across in the desert.
If you had been given a blind quiz as to what the deadliest animal in all of Africa was, you’d have to go a long ways before settling on the Cape Buffalo. However, the Cape Buffalo ranks as Africa’s deadliest animal thanks to its powerful head, huge body, and completely unpredictable nature. The Cape Buffalo has never been domesticated and it does not like humans. Throughout Africa this herd animal is known as either the ‘Widowmaker’ or ‘Black Death’ and it racks up more kills than any other large animal in the country.
With a name seemingly ripped straight from the comic books, it is hard to ignore the Deathstalker Scorpion. Scorpions themselves are terrifying insects thanks to their hard shelled body, multiple legs, and gigantic tail stingers. The Deathstalker Scorpion rises above all other kinds of scorpions to take the top spot in annual kills. With a painful bite that is deadly to children, and tremendously painful to adults, the Deathstalker accounts for 75% of global deaths from scorpions every single year. We just keep this tip in mind: If you see a scorpion you should probably avoid it.
Dragons don’t have to be ‘real’ in the fantasy sense to still be real enough to kill you. Komodo Dragons may not be winged flying creatures, but they are absolutely deadly and absolutely fearless. Much like polar bears, listed prior on our list, Komodo Dragons will eat anything that is made of flesh and blood. Komodo Dragons are four legged creatures that stick close to the ground with a long tail. An average male will weigh in at 200 pounds while sitting at almost 9 feet long. Komodo’s hunt water buffalo and birds and they’ll take down humans without a seconds hesitation. They are deceptively fast, excessively powerful, and their wide jaws will go for your throat.
Alright, so we are back to the ocean now and ready to be terrified once more. The Humboldt Squid may not be the largest squid in the ocean but it is definitely one of the most deadly. Designed to kill, the Humboldt Squid has a beak that is capable of cutting straight through flesh before breaking bones. Each tentacle is lined with suckers that are surrounded with razor edged teeth. The odds are good that if you got tangled up with one of these in the ocean you would be chum in no time.
The African Elephant has roamed the Sahara seemingly forever and there is a good reason for this. Standing at 11 feet tall and weighing in at over 12,000 pounds, the African Elephant is one of the most physically imposing creatures on the planet. Add in their keen intelligence and aggressive nature and you have a killing machine that is able to wipe out entire villages. Don’t be fooled by Disney’s Dumbo, these animals are no joke and must be avoided at all costs.
Blue Ringed Octopus
There are poisonous creatures and then there are ‘so poisonous that this has to be a joke’ level creatures. The Blue Ringed Octopus is a gorgeous little sea creature that is roughly the size of a large gum ball. With mesmerizing purple markings it is easy to forget how deadly the creature actually is. A full grown adult has enough venom in its body to kill 26 adult humans. There is no anti venom. Within minutes of getting stung you will become paralyzed and then progress to becoming incapable of breathing. We’re just going to opt out of the ocean altogether.
We aren’t sure why mosquitos exist and if we would even miss them ecologically if they vanished. Mosquitos rank #1 on our list of deadly creatures thanks to their disease transmitting ability. No matter what disease these pesky little blood suckers carry, they’ll pass it on as effectively as any carrier on the planet. Mosquitos can be directly attributed with up to 3 million kills every single year thanks to disease transfers from their bites.
Some people may be wondering how we could even think of starting our list off with a snail but to them we say: beware. The Cone Snail looks fairly tame but they are anything but. The Cone Snail has been code named as the ‘Cigarette Snail’ because you have enough time to smoke a cig before you end up dying. The Cone Snail is immensely poisonous and studies show that there is enough poison in a single drop of venom to kill 20 adult human beings. There is no known antivenin.
Deceptively cute and distressingly dangerous, the Pufferfish is one of deadliest creatures in the entire ocean — and that’s really saying something. The Pufferfish has gigantic eyes, colorful fins, and spotted bodies but it is there extending spines that will leave you wishing you had never seen them. Pufferfish have enough venom in their spines to paralyze you and stop your breathing, which is pretty bad news if you are already in the ocean. Specially trained chefs in Japan serve Pufferfish for their guests but be careful, unless perfectly prepared the fish is still deadly.
The Boomslang snake is one of those understated killers that the world is just so full of. The Boomslang snake can be found throughout Sub-Saharan African throughout grassy areas and even in trees. The Boomslang has enough poison in its body to kill just about anyone with a bite with the juveniles even being known killers. This snake loves to crawl up trees and is even known to glide from branch to branch as it hunts.
Isn’t it strange how some of the biggest killers on the planet have the tiniest of bodies? The Tsetse Fly is one of the greatest killer sin the world due to how easily that they spread disease. Tsetse flies are well known as viral carriers and they pass on diseases to several different species, including humans. The most virulent and dangerous disease that Tstetse Flies pas pass on is sleeping sickness and this is more prevalent throughout Africa where thousands die every single year.
As beautiful as they are dangerous, the Leopard is one of the fiercest felines on the entire planet — even when compared to the gigantic African Lion (more on this later). Leopards are dangerous because they are fast, quiet, and absolutely ferocious — even when injured. On the occasion that a Leopard captures its prey the large cat predator will likely drag its fresh kill up into a tree to begin feeding, showcasing elite strength and skill.
One of the ugliest fishes in the ocean also happens to be the most venemos fish there is. The Stonefish blends into the ocean floor thanks to its natural camoulflage and there it sits and waits for prey to wander by. The Stonefish can lash out in a fraction of a second and devour its prey before you even knew that it struck you. If you are a frequent diver you do not want to step on one of these creatures.
Brazilian Wandering Spider
If you have a fear of spiders then turn back now! The Brazilian Wandering Spider makes the record books as the most venemos spider on the entire planet, that we know of at least (shiver). What makes this spider particularly dangerous, outside of its giant body and protruding fangs, is that it tends to find itself in crowded, highly populated areas. Brazilian Wandering Spiders get their name from their tendency to wander into cities, houses, and cars.
The Assassin Bug may not get all of the press that it deserves, but rest assured that this is one of the deadliest creatures on the entire planet. Assassin Bugs are known to attack humans while they are sleeping, primarily biting people around the lips and face. The Assassin Bug is the primary purveyor of Chagas Disease and they are known to get up to 10,000 people killed every single year. If you see an Assassin Bug, or Kissing Bug, don’t try to pick it up with your bare hands.
Great White Shark
The Great White Shark has something that few other creatures on the planet have about it: a prehistoric look and a prehistoric danger. The Great White Shark is an apex predator and it knows no fear within its waters. While attacks from Great White’s aren’t as common as you would imagine, it’s only because they aren’t as often around humans. imagine this sharks’ wide jaws and beady eyes closing in on you and you’ll probably opt out of your next ocean swim.
The Saltwater Crocodile is another prehistoric looking creature that was designed to kill. This is the largest living reptile on the planet and it can be found in pretty much any environment you can think of. The Saltwater Croc is mostly found throughout Asia and Australia and is considered an apex predator. They are considered the most dangerous crocodile on the planet due to their natural aggressive behavior and location throughout the world. Scientists consider an encounter with a crocodile attack to be almost certainly fatal.
Also known as driver ants, Siafu Ants have been known to swarm up to numbers of 50 million plus creatures. If you are horrified by insects and the thought of being eaten alive then you had better stop reading here. Siafu Ants are known to swarm and cover the flesh of their targets and they never let go, even if their bodies are literally torn in half. You want to tread very carefully if you ever find yourself in proximity of these awful, awful creatures.
The African Lion is a noble looking creature and one of the most popular animals on the planet thanks to films like Lion King. However, you would do well to keep your space if you were to ever find your way to Saharan Africa. The African Lion is a deadly killer that can hunt, take down, and devour pretty much any creature on the plains — including humans. Look to the film Ghost in the Darkness to get an inspired-by-truth account of one of the deadliest African Lions in history.
While we may think ourselves special the truth is simple: humans are just the biggest, baddest and deadliest animals around. Rough estimates point to over 475,000 humans being killed every single year — due to other humans. We can’t remove ourselves from the animal kingdom just because we have been gifted with certain traits. Perhaps this is a cliche #1 answer, but it is one that bears reflecting upon.