Top 10 Most Dangerous Animals on Land

Top 10 Most Dangerous Animals on Land

When many people think about the most dangerous animals in the world, they think about those animals that live in exotic locations. They think of tigers in Siberia, wolves in Canada and lions in the African grasslands.

These animals are all very dangerous, and their size, strength and teeth would all do real damage to any human. However, humans rarely interact with these animals, and although they are considered to be the most dangerous creatures on land, they kill very few humans every year. Most of the humans that suffer at the hands of these animals were often trying to kill them first.

The truly dangerous animals on early includes some surprising characters. Humans see some of these animals every day, many do not even count them as dangerous.

Some of the most dangerous animals on land live far away from your present location, but you may also find some in your living room right now. Read on to learn the top 10 most dangerous animals on land.

  1. Mosquito

Mosquitos. Annoying. Gross. Dangerous.
Mosquitos. Annoying. Gross. Dangerous.

Almost everyone has experienced a mosquito bite at some point in their lives. Mosquito repellent is a staple of life outside in the summer time in almost every climate. Depending on where you live, you might even ask, “Is that a mosquito or a moose?”

Americas and Europeans have the luxury of treating mosquitos as nothing more than a common pest. They buzz in your ear and leave welts that itch where they bite you. But, for most of the world’s population, the mosquito is the most dangerous animal to inhabit the earth.

Why are these fragile, tiny creatures so dangerous? That is because they kill the most people out of all dangerous animals every year. According to Bill Gates, who works hard to prevent mosquito transmitted disease, mosquitos kill as many as 725,000 people every year. In comparison, humans murder around half a million other humans; snakes kill 50,000, and big animals like sharks and wolves kill fewer than ten people annually.

Mosquitos transmit diseases like malaria, and this alone kills over half a million people every year. Half of the world’s population lives in threat of catching malaria from a single mosquito bite. In addition to malaria, mosquitos also transmit yellow fever, dengue fever and encephalitis.

The sad thing about the number of people who are killed by mosquitos every year is that malaria is not impossible to cure. It does not take complicated efforts, surgeries or expensive medication to prevent and cure this disease. It requires mosquito nets, health awareness and antimalarial drugs that are given out by basically every doctor in America to people who travel to Asia and Africa.

To raise more awareness about the world’s most dangerous animal, Bill Gates has proposed a ‘Mosquito Week.’ This is similar to the formidable Shark Week that so many people gravitate to; however, it educates people about the dangers of mosquitos, how to protect themselves from mosquitos and what you can do to help stop malaria.

  1. Deathstalker Scorpion

The Gold Scorpion.  Don't mess with dangerous insect.
The Gold Scorpion. Don’t mess with dangerous insect.

The deathstalker scorpion goes by many names, and it is also known as the gold scorpion and the Israeli yellow scorpion. What separates this scorpion from all the others is that it is extremely venomous. For most of us, fortunately, there is no reason to fear as this scorpion is primarily found in North Africa and the Middle East because it enjoys a desert habitat. They can also be found in dry forests, as long as they are warm.

The deathstalker scorpion is usually around three inches in size if it’s male or four inches in size if it’s female. They are a shade of yellow that some people mistake for a plastic substance. They are also thinner than other scorpions, and their physical traits are designed to protect them in their desert surroundings.

What makes this scorpion so dangerous is not only its venom but its defensiveness. While other scorpions might hide under a rock, you are more likely to be attacked and bitten by a deathstalker scorpion.

If you are attacked, you might suffer from a fever, high blood pressure, seizures, a high heart rate or a coma. Other dangers include increased fluid in the lungs.

If you are not normally healthy, you suffer an increased risk of death from the venom. Usually, the venom attacks your respiratory and/or cardiovascular system. Death usually comes from the failure one of these two essential systems.

  1. Cape Buffalo

Cape Buffalos are tough customers.
Cape Buffalos are tough customers.

The cape buffalo is rarely immortalized among the big game conquests of Africa but it is one of the most dangerous animals on land. It is not lions, tigers or bears that kill more hunters in Africa every year; it is the cape buffalo.

Some say that an elephant never forgets. This may be true, but if the elephant never forgets then the cape buffalo never forgives. Many of the deaths that occur each year due to animal attacks in Africa are the result of a cape buffalo attacking a hunter who once injured or wounded them. Some buffalos have even been known to harm people years after they were initially wounded.

The cape buffalo is more than just a large, lumbering beast. It swims incredibly well for its size and it will cross deep stretches of water to for greener grass. They are also incredibly strong. They are around four times stronger than the average ox and very capable of tipping over a car.

The cape buffalo knows that the best defense is a good offense. They will even kill lions and lion cubs to ensure that they are not hurt by this other dangerous predator. Their hide, which is two inches thick in some places, protects them from battles with other buffalo as well as some predators.

Although the cape buffalo is a strong and defensive creature, they also put their memories to positive use. Some researchers that study these buffalo develop relationships with them. One researcher has reported that they were approached by cape buffalo that they had not engaged with for several years, yet the buffalo came up not to defend themselves but to ask for affection.

  1. African Bush Elephant

The African Elephant. Huge and lethal.
The African Elephant. Huge and lethal.

The African bush elephant makes the list of dangerous animals because of its size. It is the largest animal to walk the land, and some elephants can be 24 feet long and 13 feet tall. These huge animals can weigh as much as 11 tons, and despite their size, African elephants can actually live to celebrate 70 birthdays, on average. They have the second longest lifespan out of any mammal, too, though humans still live longer.

An African elephant is a demanding creature. They only eat vegetation, but to keep themselves satisfied, they need to consume around 350 pounds of vegetation every day.

It takes a lot of calories to be as strong as the African elephant. This is because their trunks alone can lift up objects that weigh 400 pounds. This is enabled by the 40,000 different tendons and muscles in the trunk alone. But besides being very strong, these elephants can also use their tusks to pick up smaller objects.

The African bush elephant has the potential to be a dangerous animal. However, this mammal is under constant threat from another of the most dangerous animals on land: humans. These animals have been hunted to the point of near extinction on several occasions.

  1. Hippopotamus

Hippopotamus breath.  It's also lethal.
Hippopotamus breath. It’s also lethal.

The hippopotamus is one of the most dangerous land animals, although it spends much of its time in lakes and rivers. The life of a hippo actually sounds serene. It spends most of its day, up to 16 hours, swimming gracefully through the water to protect itself from the heat of the African plains. The other part of the day is often spent sunbathing on the shoreline enjoying the sunshine.

The reason that hippos are so dangerous is two-fold. The first reason is their sheer size. They can weigh between 5,000 and 8,000 pounds on average and are between 9.5 and 15 feet long. The second reason that hippos are so dangerous is that their size works to their advantage when they attack humans.

The hippo is a very unpredictable animal, too. You can never tell if a hippo will attack you or not, though they often attack anyone who gets to close. Whether you are on land or on a boat, you need to watch out for hippos, which are often mostly submerged under the water.

The male hippos will attack to defend their territory. You do not need to fear them if you are not near a river or lake. Although they will travel several miles to graze in the evening, their territory usually corresponds to a body of water.

Female hippos will also attack if they fear that anyone or anything is too close to baby hippos. Baby hippos are often attacked by other predators like lions. As a result, the mothers have to remain vigilant at all times. Baby hippos do not often join the mother on shore to feed out of fear of predators.

Despite their size and weight, a hippo can run as fast as 20 miles every hour. They also have huge teeth that require special cavities in their heads to hold them. Their jaws can hold 20 inch canine teeth. If a hippo does manage to catch a human, if the sheer power of their bite doesn’t hurt them then their teeth will. A hippo even has enough power and strength to kill a crocodile, one of most dangerous animals in the water.

  1. African Lion

The African Lion will eat you given the chance.
The African Lion will eat you given the chance.

The African lion is the undisputed king of the savannah, and it is known for being ruthless, vicious, prideful and dangerous. The lion is different from all of the other animals on this list because it is a big cat. Other animals are mammals with massive relatives but the lion’s family also includes smaller, less powerful animals.

Lions live in groups called prides. The group living system contributes to how dangerous they are. Each pride may have around three male lions and as many as a dozen females. The lion cubs are also included as part of the pride. However, when the young male cubs grow up, they leave and begin their own pride, or family.

The lion is a very big cat. It weighs somewhere between 265 and 420 pounds depending on the gender of the lion and the area that it lives in. Lions are usually also between 4.5 and 6.5 feet long.

Both the male and female lion are dangerous predators. The male lion has to work to defend his territory both from other lions and predators. This is mostly done through preventative measures like marking the area with its scent or roaring to scare away animals.

The female lions do much of the hunting. They work in groups because lions are not as fast as much of their prey. They prefer to hunt animals like antelopes and wildebeest but will also take on larger game. The group hunts, encircles and kills their prey before dividing it up between the group.

Lions are dangerous predators; however, they rarely attack humans unprovoked. Those who live on farms in Africa say that lions are a menace because they will kill the farmers’ livestock, but lions only encroach upon a human’s territory when they cannot find food in their own.

Lions are at constant risk for extinction. It is legal to hunt specific lions in parts of Africa, but illegal hunting is still common. Lions are also killed by farmers and ranchers who want to keep them away from their farms.

  1. Inland Taipan

Inland Taipan is one of the world's most venemous snakes.
Inland Taipan is one of the world’s most venemous snakes.

The Inland Tiapan is known as the world’s most venomous snake. Although the average person will never come across one, this snake’s venom can kill any unhealthy person, and many healthy ones. Anyone who encounters and is bitten by the snake should be treated at a qualified hospital immediately after being bitten.

This snake is also known as the Fierce Snake, though this name does not match its personality, as it is rare for anyone to see this snake. They come out in the early morning to feed or to get some sunshine before it gets too hot. However, they go back underground as soon as the sun begins to reach an overhead position in the sky. During the winter, the snakes can be seen in the afternoon as well.

The Inland Tiapan mostly eats a rat known as the Long-haired Rat. However, these snakes live mostly in in southern Queensland, Australia, and this means that the Inland Tiapan are subject to the prevalence of their prey. When there are a large number of rats, the snakes will eat them. If the number of rats falls, the snakes will eat other prey or metabolize their stored fat until more rats come along.

Even when they are low on food, the snakes will not attack humans unless they are provoked. If you find an Inland Tiapan, it would often be during a winter afternoon. However, the snake does not just attack any human. It will provide an advanced warning by created an S-shaped curve with is body. Its head will raise up and usually hiss at the person that is threatening it. If you ignore this warning, you are likely to be bitten.

Most people who have been bitten by the Inland Tiapan have survived. This is because they correctly applied first aid and then went immediately to the hospital.

  1. Siafu Ants

Driver Ants. Strength and lethality in numbers.
Driver Ants. Strength and lethality in numbers.

Siafu ants have become known as one of the fiercest types of ants on the planter. Although they are small, they band together and become very powerful. Siafu ants are more commonly known as driver ants.

There are many things that make siafu ants dangerous. One of the most difficult things about dealing with them is that they are nomadic. These ants travel from place to place in search of food sources. When they exhaust a food source in a particular area, they will pack up and move on.

When siafu ants travel, they travel together as a group. This is strategic not only for survival but also for attacking predators. Each side of the group will have attack ants to help ward off and attack enemies so that the common worker ants can survive the journey.

Siafu ants are also aggressive carnivores. While they feed off earthworms and not off human flesh, these ants will eat anything that is in the way of their march. If an animal, or a human accidentally steps on one of these ants, they will attack as a cohesive group. Millions of ants will bite and latch on to whatever is closest to them. Their bites are reported to hurt and once an ant is on you, it is very hard to get them off again.

These ants can kill humans. Although it is not common, if a human gets in their way, they do not think twice about killing. Those who have died at the hands of these ants have been suffocated by them.

  1. Poison Dart Frog

Poison Dart Frogs.  Cute but dangerous as heck.
Poison Dart Frogs. Cute but dangerous as heck.

The poison dart frog is another dangerous animal that can kill at moment’s notice. These frogs primarily live in Central and South America, especially in tropical forests.

Although they are only one inch long on average, these frogs are actually carnivores. They primarily eat insects that come their way and are not known to eat anything else. They have few natural predators in the wild. This means that they can live anywhere from three to 15 years when they are left alone. The only real predator they have are snakes; however, this snake has adapted over time and does not suffer from the poison the frogs carry.

These frogs do not hop around shooting humans with their poison darts. Though if they did, rainforest tourists would be in a lot of trouble. These frogs are known was one of the most toxic animals in the world. The venom inside each frog is enough to kill ten healthy men.

Frogs do not use their venom to kill humans but people do. The frogs get their English name because indigenous people in the area use the poison from these frogs in their blowgun darts when they are hunting.

  1. Human

Man! Dangerous. Nasty. Even holding only fingerguns, foreboding and menacing.
Man! Dangerous. Nasty. Even holding only fingerguns, foreboding and menacing.

The human is a mammal which varies in height and weight and lives between 70 and 80 years on average. Most people do not think of themselves as being the most dangerous animals on land but in most cases, they are.

Humans are not just dangerous because they kill other people. Huge numbers of people are killed in wars. A surprising number of people are also murdered senselessly every day. However, humans are dangerous because they kill systematically and indiscriminately

Any carnivore kills other animals to find a food source. However, humans farm and raise animals specifically for the purpose of killing them. Humans also kill a large number of animals and insects that they consider to be pests.

It is hard to find another mammal that will simultaneously kill lions, over fish the seas and set traps for mice. However, humans are just that mammal.

Humans also have more devices to create a higher number of casualties. Most mammals are limited to their wits and their natural defenses. Some mammals use tools, but rarely for killing other mammals. However, humans developed spears, bows and arrows, hammers, guns, ships, bombs, knives and more weapons specifically for killing both human and non-human animals more efficiently.

Conclusion

Thankfully, most people do not have to worry about encountering the world’s strongest and most poisonous animals. These animals prefer to live in places that are either inhospitable to modern humans or out of reach of civilization.

But some of the most dangerous animals on the planet are all around us. Mosquitos causes more deaths every year than every other animal on the planet. Humans come in at a close second, depending on the year.

The top 10 most dangerous animals on the planet do not only live in jungles or deserts. Some lives in single family homes, too.