There are countless tales of when animals go bad and attack humans. Thankfully it’s incredibly rare but remember that these are wild animals and this is nature! So on your next adventure vacation stay safe and look out for these critters;
Hippos – Sub-Saharan Africa – Hippos are reputed to be one of the most dangerous animals on earth and fatal attacks have been reported over the last few years in Kenya and Zambia. Hippos have the strength to flip boats and crush their victims. Be quiet when around hippos as they scare easily.
Vampire Bats – Venezuela – There have been at least 132 reported deaths from vampire bats since 1932. Vampire bats, which carry rabies, are to be found across south and central America and most commonly in Venezuela and Trinidad and Tobago. Like a scene out of the classic Lost Boys vampire horror film, these silent assassins drink victim’s blood at night whilst they are sleeping. Locals and tourists are equally at risk so pack that mosquito net!
Great White Sharks – New South Wales, Australia – NSW in Australia is home to the worst shark attacks on the planet! There have been 148 reported attacks between 1876 and 2008 including 12 from great white sharks and 9 of those were fatal. Don’t swim alone and if you do stumble across a shark then a mighty blow to their eyes or gills (not nose) should send them packing!
Polar Bears – Russia – Cuddly they’re not! And the 19 fatal polar bear attacks over the last hundred years goes to prove it. Canada has also has 7 deaths from polar bear attacks and the USA has had 2. These aggressive beasts can be deterred with lots of noise.
Bengal Tigers – Bangladesh – the most dangerous place in the world for a tiger attack is in the Sundarbans in Bangladesh. Tiger attacks can be frequent throughout Asia and there are around 150 fatalities every year. Tigers are incredible territorial and if faced with one stand your ground as their instant will be to chase.
Piranha – Amazon River Basin, Brazil – The most vicious of all the 40 species of piranha is the red-bellied piranha which is found in the Amazon River Basin and will happily chew victims flesh down to the bone. There have only been 3 reported deaths – most people get away with just a nibble! Watch out during the dry warm season and id confronted by a piranha, be quick and quiet and keep your feet out of the water!
Box Jellyfish – Northern Australia – during the last century there have been over 70 box jellyfish fatalities. And the most deadly species of jellyfish lives of the Northern coast of Australia during November to May. They are small and mighty and one box jellyfish has enough venom to kill 60 humans in just 3 minutes! So pack your Lycra suit and watch out for their 10 feet long tentacles, which can also cause death instantly!
Mountain Lions – California, USA – Mountain lion habitat stretches all the way from the Yukon to the Southern Andes but California has had more encounters than anywhere else. In Canada and the USA there have been 80 lion attacks and 12 fatal cases in the last 20 years. And scarily half the deaths have been in California. Never go biking or hiking alone and if you do happen upon a mountain lion then stand tall, make a lot of noise and maintain eye contact.
Reptiles and Snakes – Florida, USA – Staying in the United States, this time to Florida which has seen a massive increase in exotic pets being dumped in the wild. This has resulted in some 200 species roaming wild including massive Nile monitor lizards, boa constrictor snakes and the deadly anacondas. South Florida is equipped with a Venom Response Unit which has dealt with 1,039 bite alerts since 1998 and 367 Burmese python removals since 2000!
Alligators – Florida, USA – Florida makes the list twice thanks to gator attacks, which do happen all over America, but are worst in Florida, with around 8 attacks a year. Fatalities only occur every few years so be on alert if you’re near water.
By Julie Bowman