The animal kingdom is incredibly diverse and full of fascinating creatures. However, many of the members are also very dangerous to humans because of their venom. You might assume snakes are high on the list, but anti-venom exists for a high number of them, so we’re not going to count them. A lot of venomous creatures actually live in the ocean, so they’re easily avoided, but that does mean if you do encounter one, getting treatment is hard. Let’s take a look at the worst culprits:
Platypi look like a combination of a duck and a large hamster in that they have bills, lay eggs, and produce milk. The goofiest creature on earth also happens to be quite dangerous. It keeps its venom in spurs on its hind legs. The poison isn’t fatal, but it does cause agonizing pain for weeks that isn’t tempered by morphine.
The Eastern diamondback rattlesnake
The Eastern diamond is the most venomous snake in North America. It takes 100-150 mg of venom to kill a human; the Eastern diamondback injects anywhere from 400-1,000 mg. It’s also North America’s largest snake, so at least you’ll see it coming.
Puffer fish are packed with a toxin. It’s present in its skin, liver, gonads, and muscle tissue. It’s also a delicacy and requires trained chefs to prepare. Eating a little toxin can make you ill while ingesting too much of the toxin, it can cause paralysis, convulsions, and death.
The stonefish is a great hider, which is not good for divers who might come across it. It looks like a rock and has venom in its spines, which cause paralysis, shock, swelling, and death. Because you need to get treatment within six hours, meeting the stonefish in its natural underwater habitat is very dangerous for humans.
The fat-tailed scorpion
The Tunisian fat-tailed scorpion is behind 90% of all scorpion stings in North Africa. Around 400 people a year are killed. If you don’t get treatment within six hours of being stung, you would be one of them.
The cone snail
The sea-dwelling cone snail is slow, but they have teeth sharp enough to cut through a wetsuit. They’re also very small, so a diver might not see them until it’s too late. Though tiny, they have enough venom to kill 20 people. If bitten, the venom causes respiratory failure, paralysis, and death. There is no anti-venom.
The blue-ringed octopus
Only the size of a golf ball, the blue-ringed octopus is extremely venomous. It can be found in the ocean around Japan, Indonesia, and Australia. One sting has enough venom to kill 26 people, and there’s no antidote, so if you happen to be a victim, get ready to be dead in a half hour.
The Irukandji jellyfish is another mini killer. Only about the size of a fingertip, it causes agonizing pain and potentially fatal brain hemorrhages. There’s also no known anti-venom, so death is likely if a tiny tentacle touches you.
The box jellyfish
Box jellyfish, specifically the largest species, can cause death within 2 minutes. These transparent killers are fast, and they tend to grab their victims, so you can’t get away. Its tentacles cause paralysis, shock, cardiac arrest, and delirium. There is an antidote, but you will need it immediately, so keep it close if you’re swimming in box-jellyfish waters.