When we think about deadly animals, we often think of powerful beasts that express aggression through raw power but sometimes it is the smallest creatures we have to watch out for as they can do just as much damage, if not more, than their mammalian counterparts. Here are 30 of the world's most dangerous insects and for this list, we are considering arachnids insects although we are aware they are different things.
1. Africanized Honey Bees
More commonly known as 'killer bees,' the Africanized honey bee can kill a human, particularly if they swarm. Extremely defensive animals, they will attack if they feel their hive is threatened but what makes them so dangerous is their persistence and intelligence. Unlike other insects, they cannot be escaped by hiding under water as they have been known to hover above the water and wait for their prey to surface before attacking. Put simply, don't wind them up.
In a direct sense, termites are not dangerous but when left to breed freely and in large numbers they become troublesome as they can destroy a whole seasons worth of crops and severely damage infrastructure. Large termite populations have led to issues with starvation and poor crop growth in various places across the globe, and that is where their threat comes from.
Again, not wildly dangerous on their terms but these scavengers feed off of skin and blood and so, if left untreated, they can cause an array of issues for their host and open them up to infection although they do not transmit disease.
4. Deer Ticks
These ticks tend to live off of wild deer, but they can infect people with the incurable Lyme disease which can lead to fever, nausea, and headaches before further developing into stiff joints and heart failure over time.
5. Army Ants
Not particularly known for attacking humans and relatively harmless (if still painful) on their own, a colony of these creatures can devour up to half a million small vertebrates in a day and so should they choose to attack a human it could be a serious issue indeed.
6. Yellow Jackets
An extremely agressive type of wasps, Yellow Jackets have an incredibly painful sting that, although not deadly in themselves, kill many people every year due to allergic reactions. What makes them worse is that they have been known to mark their tragets and pursue them relentlessly until a sting has been administered.
7. Black Widow Spider
So yes, as previously mentioned, we know Spiders are arachnids and not insects but they are creepy crawlies and this one is deadly so it makes the list regardless. The black widow, known for devouring its mate after copulation, can release a deadly neurotoxin that will cause extreme pain in humans and even death if left untreated.
8. Puss Caterpillar
Not named after puss as such but rather pussy cats due to its cute, furry appearance but do not touch its soft exterior as you will find that the fur becomes spines that can cause severe reactions including breathing difficulties and chest pains. Not deadly as such but if you are asthmatic or leave symptoms untreated this can lead to very dangerous health complications.
Not deadly in themselves, they are a disease carrier that live in the worst of conditions. Known to be incredibly resilient they can live months without food or water, can turn canibalistic and are speculated to be one of the only creatures on Earth that would survive a nuclear attack.
10. Parasitc Worms
Burrowing into the human digestive tract, they absorb the nutrients that the host puts into their body and so robs them of their own sustenance and can cause other fatal issues including organ failure but this would come after the insomnia, vomiting and nausea.
11. Human Botflies
The human botfly has larvae that can be dropped onto skin and then burrows underneath it before hatching out of the host's tissue. The larvae transmit infection and disease of the most unpleasant kind.
12. Assassin Bugs
The aptly named assasin bug carries the horrific chagas disease which causes heart damage and attacks the central nervous system. A big problem in rural parts of the Americas this insect has wrought havoc on poorer communities.
13. Bullet Ants
Another ant that is not particularly dangerous on its own, it's bite feels like being shot, hence the name, and can cause shock to those with weak hearts and in a large colony can be terribly dangerous. People have been known to have an allergic reaction to the bite which can then, in turn, kill.
14. Brazilian Wandering Spider
Again, not an insect but since it is considered the most venomous spider on the planet due to the toxicity of its bite. Strangely enough, if its bite doesn't kill, it can give male victims an immensely painful four hour erection. Extremely defensive, you do not want to cross one of these.
15. Anopheles Mosquito
A carrier of such disease as malaria, this mosquito has severley diminished populations in the most horrific way, specifically in tropical areas, work is under way to find a way to stop this menace.
16. Rat Fleas
Yet another disease carrier, these fleas feed off of rodents and were the main proponent of the spread of the bubonic plague across Europe, one of the deadliest diseases to ever sweep the continent.
17. Fire Ants
By clinging onto prey with their powerful jaws, they spray formic acid into the wound that caues an intense burning sensation and has been known to kill sensitive individuals.
18. Giant Asian Hornet
Known as giant Asian hornets, Japanese hornets or giant sparrow bees, these insects have a toxic sting that attacks the nervous system and can kill in just one sting. Its venom is flesh dissolving and alerts other wasps to sting you until dead. However, not inherently agressive they are best left undisturbed.
19. Brown Recluse Spider
Yet another spider to make the list, the Brown Recluse is as deadly as the Black Widow and has a bite that can destroy skin tissue and cause lesions. If these are left untreated they will become fatal.
20. The Bull Ant
Massive mandibles cling onto their victim as they then curl their body toward the prey and sting repetitively until dead. The Bull ants’ sting is extremely painful and deaths have been attributed to this ant, although suggestions that deaths occur every year in Australia are incorrect.
21. Funnel-Web Spiders
With a venom that attacks the nervous system, these spiders have been known to paralyze and even kill with their bites. An anti-venom has been developed but treatment must be sought immediately.
22. Fat Tailed Scorpion
Not an insect but yet another arachnid, this one has a very literal name. Found in the middle East it is dubbed a man killer due to the the high number of deaths from its sting which turns the area affected instantly into liquid. Yes, instantly into liquid.
23. Redback Spiders
A singular bite does not often cause death but it will cause paralysis and several might kill. Severe illness often arises from the fact its venom attacks the nerves. A relative of the Black Widow, it is extremely similar in appearance.
24. Jumping Ants
Another ant to avoid, it tracks its prey via sight unlike most others that use scent. It jumps at its victims and has a venom that can cause death although this is a rare outcome in humans.
25. Tsetse Fly
Like the mosquito, this flying insect feasts on blood and spreads the deadly sleeping sickness throughout Africa due to the chemical they carry called trypanosome.