The 40 Most Dangerous Animals on the Planet

There are so many adorable and cuddly little creatures in the animal kingdom. But you might be shocked to learn that some of these animals are so dangerous they could stop your heart, infect, or poison you if you just happen to come into contact with them. Some of these animals roam freely in the air, on land, and in the ocean. So no matter what part of the planet you live in, there’s a chance that you might run into one of these deadly creatures someday.

Hooded Pitohui

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John Dumbacher

The Hooded Pitohui might look like a cute bird, but it contains a neurotoxin in its skin and feathers called homobatrachotoxin. The toxin is believed to have originated from the bird’s diet which consists of beetles. The poison is harmful to smaller creatures, which makes it easier for this bird to hunt for food.

But in humans, it will only cause tingling and numbness when they come into contact with it.

Hawksbill Sea Turtles

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Sea Turtle World

Hawksbill sea turtles consume poisonous prey such as the venomous cnidarians and toxic algae and sponges. These toxins build up in their flesh over time, which means that anyone who is unfortunate enough to eat one of these turtles will suffer from a condition called marine turtle poisoning, which includes symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea, and other horrible symptoms.

Cane Toad

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Flickr / Kathy Detweiler

Cane toads have poison glands which produce bufotoxin, one of the deadliest toxins on the planet. The toxin is prevalent in their skin, and it’s so powerful that it can kill all sorts of animals, even adult dogs. But they’re pretty poisonous even when they’re still tadpoles, too.

So, any animal that eats these creatures when they’re in the early stages of development will perish.

Poison Dart Frog

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Wikimedia Commons

The poison dart frog has dark skin with bright yellow markings, which make them so visually appealing to humans. But predators in the wild know better than to mess with these frogs because their poison is in their skin and can affect anyone and anything. Even touching the skin will cause the toxin to be introduced into someone’s body.

So, if you see one, don’t touch them and don’t let them touch you by any means.

Spanish Fly

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K. Hinze Corbis via Wired

The Spanish fly produces a toxin known as cantharidin to defend itself against potential threats. Once they release the toxin, it is absorbed on contact by the skin.

The victim will immediately experience blisters and burning pain in the area. And if the fly gets eaten, the toxin within will cause blistering, ulcers and ultimately bleeding in the digestive tract that can lead to death.

Comb Stars

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One Kind Planet

Comb Stars contain tetrodotoxin, a powerful neurotoxin that leads to paralysis and respiratory failure which causes death. But the toxin isn’t introduced through pincers. Instead, it’s in the star’s flesh and contains enough toxin to kill 520 mice.

Unfortunately, there is no known antidote for this poison so this is one star every stargazer should avoid at all costs.

Rough-Skinned Newt

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Wikipedia

There are three known species of salamander that are poisonous and the rough-skinned newt happens to be one of them. Their flesh contains enough tetrodotoxin to kill almost any threat it comes into contact with. But don’t say they didn’t warn you.

The newt produces a foul smell to warn anyone and anything to stay away. Those who don’t adhere to its warning and eats it will feel numb all over. Eventually, they’ll go into cardiac arrest.

Striated Surgeonfish

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Wikipedia

The striated surgeonfish doesn’t produce its own toxin, it accumulates toxins while feeding on algae, which sometimes contain tiny dinoflagellates, which produce maitotoxin. The toxin builds up in their flesh, which causes a condition known as ciguatera fish poisoning. This condition has affects up to 50,000 people annually.

Some of the symptoms of ciguatera are like food poisoning and lasts from months or even years. Sometimes, the symptoms are so bad that doctors misdiagnose patients with multiple sclerosis.

Pufferfish

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Wikimedia Commons

The Pufferfish’s spikes, kidneys and liver contain nerve toxins, and yet its meat is considered a rare, expensive and delicious delicacy. But the pufferfish has to be properly prepared as the nerve toxins are extremely dangerous to humans. In fact, it should be prepped and cooked by a licensed chef or the results of eating it can be fatal.

Blue Ring Octopus

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OpenCage

Don’t let the golf ball size of the blue ring octopus fool you. It contains enough poison to kill as many as 26 people in a matter of minutes. But the scary thing about this octopus is that its bite is practically painless, so most victims don’t even realize they’ve been poisoned until they start to go numb all over their body.

Then their eyesight starts to fail, and the muscles required to breathe shut down.

Brazilian Wandering Spider

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Wikimedia Commons

The Brazilian wandering spider is considered the most poisonous spider on the planet. But long before someone expires from the effects of the toxin, the spider’s bites cause heart problems, convulsions, hypothermia. But there’s one other effect that is simply humiliating if you’re a man.

The toxin causes painful erections that don’t go away until the victim dies.

Hyenas

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Pixabay

Hyenas are merciless predators because they don’t even bother putting their prey out of their misery before eating them. Instead, they’ll tear an animal or human’s skin and, in some cases, face clean off with its sharp teeth and start eating them while they’re still breathing. So, if you’re attacked by a hyena, expect to feel every painful love bite until the end.

Golden Dart Frog

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Wikimedia Commons

The golden dart frog looks fluorescent green but has a black mouth and black fingers that makes it look like it accidentally fell into a bowl of black ink. Its saucer shaped eyes are very creepy, too. But fear is exactly what humans and animals should feel when they see this frog because its skin is coated with a poison that is powerful enough to kill 10 men.

All it takes is one touch and it’s hasta la vista, baby.

Australian Box Jellyfish

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Wikimedia Commons

The Australian box jellyfish is about the size of a salad bowl and tends to dwell in tropical waters. It also has four different eyes, each with a different ability like detecting certain light levels, colors and sizes of objects. They also have about 60 tentacles that are approximately 15 feet long and contain 5,000 stinging cells in each tentacle.

Their toxin is powerful enough to kill up to 60 humans, which makes them far more dangerous to humans than sharks.

Sydney Funnel-Web Spider

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Wikipedia

Australia is known for having some of the deadliest creatures on the planet, and the Sydney funnel-web spider just happens to be one of them. In fact, this particular spider species is deemed the world’s deadliest spider because its poison is powerful enough to kill a human in 15 minutes. So, if you happen to get bit by one of these, hurry to a hospital for the anti-venom immediately.

Cone Snail

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Wikimedia Commons

There are 500 different types of cone snail species, but the geographic cone is the deadliest. Cone snails have a harpoon-like tooth that they propel towards their victim, paralyzing them almost instantly. The toxin also paralyzes the diaphragm, which often leads to death.

But their shells are so pretty that they often attract prey like other fish towards them.

Boomslang Snake

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Wikipedia

The boomslang snake has the ability to open its mouth nearly to a 180-degree angle, which means it can sink its fangs even deeper into its victim. The slow-acting venom known as hemotoxin will cause a victim to bleed internally. Scientists have studied the effects of the poison in mice and have found that it’s deadlier than the venom from the black mamba snake.

Komodo Dragon

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Wikimedia

The Komodo dragon is part of the monitor lizard species and is enormous in size. But their size isn’t the only thing that should have you worried. These lizards have serrated teeth, which makes their bite extremely painful.

And if that wasn’t bad enough, there are tons of toxic bacteria in their mouths that are deadly to anyone who’s unfortunately enough to encounter a Komodo dragon.

Leopards

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Wikipedia

Although lions are scary in their own right, their cat cousin, the leopard, is considered far deadlier and more unpredictable. Leopards often target humans and kill them, but it’s often the result of mistaken species identity. Leopards tend to confuse them for other wild animals.

In fact, a lot of human deaths occur in India as a result of leopards prowling the streets.

Cassowary

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Wikimedia Commons

The Cassowary is considered the deadliest bird on the planet and you’d be wise to stir clear of this creature if you happen to see one. They’re massive and have talons that are powerful and sharp enough to cut open and remove the internal organs of people. They sometimes wander onto beaches and homes looking for something to munch on, and if they aren’t fed, they’ll attack anything it sees.

So, it’s best to keep a safe distance as they can eviscerate you or mortally wound you. All it takes is one swipe from its talons to rip your jugular vein or other parts of your body open.

Inland Taipan

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Wikimedia Commons

If you thought the king cobra was scary, then you’ve hopefully never encountered an Inland Taipan. They are considered to be the most poisonous snakes on Earth. Their venom is 50 times deadlier than the king cobra’s bite.

If you happen to get bitten by one of these slithery creatures, you’ll have about 30 minutes to get to a hospital and have doctors administer the vaccine.

Deathstalker Scorpion

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Wikimedia Commons

Don’t let its size fool you. There’s a reason the deathstalker scorpion has the word death in its name. It might be a four-inch creature, but it’s the deadliest scorpion on the planet.

Its singer contains toxins that it will unleash super-fast. In fact, the deathstalker is one of seven scorpion species that strike swiftly and mercilessly. Once you fall victim to it, the toxins will cause fluid to build up in your lungs that will cause you to stop breathing.

Stonefish

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Wikimedia Commons

The stonefish is one of the planet’s most venomous fish. It’s considered a close relative to the scorpionfish and uses its dorsal fin spines to inject venom into their victim. This toxin has the power to stop an adult human’s heart within 24 hours.

Fortunately, it’s not the prettiest looking creature in the sea so you’ll likely stir clear of it before it has the chance to cause any harm.

Rhinoceros

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Wikimedia Commons

A rhinoceros is a massive beast that weighs approximately three tons and should not be estimated. It has the ability to charge at anything or anyone it considers a target at 35 miles per hour. But that’s not the scary part.

It also has a three-foot horn point that it will use when it charges at you. But they’re more likely to attack when they feel that their offspring is in danger.

Cape Buffalo

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Wikimedia Commons

The cape buffalo is every hunter’s worst nightmare. Those who have been bold or foolish enough to go after this creature have either been seriously wounded or didn’t live to tell the tale. The cape buffalo kills approximately 200 people every year. But they don’t attack unless they’re provoked.

If you’re a hunter and do shoot at them, make sure it’s fatal. Otherwise it will fight back. And it’s said that it has the power to topple a moving vehicle over, too.

Leopard Seal

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If you’ve seen the film “Happy Feet” then you know that leopard seals are not to be trifled with. Well, it turns out that they’re dangerous in the real world, too. They live in the Antarctic and have been known for dragging humans under water.

Fortunately, they generally use their razor-sharp teeth on smaller creatures such as fish and penguins instead of people.

Slow Loris

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Wikimedia

The slow loris looks adorable, but don’t let its appearance lull you into a false sense of security. Don’t even think about reaching out and petting one of these creatures either. Hidden in their elbows are toxic glands which the slow loris likes to lick to lace their bites with poison.

This is often fatal to other animals, but only pose a threat to humans who happen to be allergic to their poison.

African Elephant

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Wikimedia

The African elephant is vegetarian, but there are some instances when they will attack humans. It happens during mating season when the male African elephant’s testosterone levels are at an all-time high. When this happens, these creatures become very aggressive and will try to tramp anyone or anything that gets too close to them.

The Pallas’s Cat

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Wikimedia

The Pallas’s cat is a member of the feline family, which is why it looks small, cutesy and fairly harmless. But they are very independent and don’t like having company around unless its mating season. In fact, if someone attempts to walk into their territory, they’ll become aggressive and lash out.

Their fangs are also 3 times longer than those of a house cat and can break a rabbit’s spine in half without effort. They’ll also attack humans and can’t be domesticated.

The Honey Badger

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Wikimedia

The honey badger is smaller than a lion or a leopard and yet it’s fearless and will not hesitate to go after either one of them. It also has a powerful immune system, so even if a snake bites it, it will fall asleep, but won’t die. Honey badgers also have skin that is so solid and thick that most animals can’t sink their teeth into them.

Even a machete would have trouble cutting through them. But the badger’s sharp teeth and strong jaws are powerful enough to consume their prey whole, and that includes their skull and spine.

The Platypus

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Wikimedia

A male platypus has ankle spurs capable of introducing venom into their victims. They often use them during mating season when they are fighting over a potential female. But the platypus will also use their toxin against large predators who would seek to harm them like dingoes.

Fortunately, their venom won’t harm humans, but they might experience some uncomfortable symptoms like headaches and in some cases edema.

Malayan Pit Viper

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Wikimedia

The Malayan pit viper’s venom isn’t usually fatal. In fact, their bite has only led to the death of humans in 2 percent of the cases. But that doesn’t mean you should bring one home with you and turn it into a pet either.

The bite from one of these vipers have been known to cause tissue necrosis which ultimately leads to the amputation of the victim’s limbs.

Kissing Bugs

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Glenn Seplak

The kissing bug, also known as the assassin bug are able to transmit the parasite that causes the Chagas disease when biting someone. Unfortunately, a lot of people who have Chagas disease have no idea that they have been infected. But the illness often leads to heart damage and digestive problems.

And in Brazil, a number of cases of stillbirths were the result of Chagas.

Freshwater Snails

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Wikimedia

The freshwater snail appears harmless but they’re responsible for about 4,400 deaths every year. They’re capable of transmitting a parasitic disease known as schistosomiasis, which is fairly common in South America, Asia and Africa. But you don’t have to encounter one of these snails to become infected.

If you happen to come into contact with the water that the snail resides in, you’ll contract schistosomiasis, which will damage the liver, spleen, and intestines.

Great White Shark

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Flickr

Since 1907, the great white shark has used its massive and deadly jaws to munch on and kill over 220 people. Their jaws are considered one of the deadliest on the planet because its bite is approximately 14 times stronger than that of an adult human male. Great whites grown about 15 feet in length and weigh about 5,000 pounds. But contrary to popular belief, they’re more curious than predatory and will take a sample bite of a human rather than tearing them to pieces, unless of course they like what they taste.

Saltwater Crocodile

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Flickr

Saltwater crocodiles are the deadliest large animals on the planet and reportedly kill about 1,000 people annually. Some even say that they are the land counterparts of the great white shark because their jaws are almost as powerful and use almost the same force.

Ascaris Roundworm

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Wikipedia

The ascaris roundworm is a parasite that hatches its eggs inside their victim’s intestines. They’ll burrow through the guts and travel through the bloodstream until they take up residence in the lungs. Unfortunately, they’re so tiny that a lot of people don’t even realize that they have them inside of them until it’s too late to do anything about it. The ascaris roundworm has been known to kill about 4,500 people every year.

Tsetse Fly

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Pets Foto

The tsetse fly is known to kill approximately 300 people every year by spreading what is known as the sleeping sickness in places like Africa. When these tiny flies sting you, you’ll experience horrible symptoms like fever, intense pain, and intense mood swings. Most people reported feeling like they were going insane. But in the final stages, you’ll feel into a deep sleep and then die.

Wolves

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Wikipedia

Wolves tend to target farm animals like sheep and other livestock and domestic creatures like cats and dogs. As far as humans are concerned, they’re actually quite afraid of them and prefer to avoid them at all costs. But that doesn’t mean they won’t attack if they’re provoked.

Wolves will also attack humans if they’ve been infected with rabies.

Bees

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Wikipedia

Bees are among the deadliest creatures in the United States. There are about 60 reported human fatalities every year. Many of these cases are the result of people going into anaphylactic shock from the sting.

Ironically, there are other people in the world that actually seek apitherapy, a practice that treats conditions like cancer and arthritis by using bee stings.

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