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About Australia - Australia's deadliest animals

Updated on March 25, 2014
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Australia is a vast and interesting country full of amazing critters and creatures. If your planning a visit or already live here and just want to know more here is a brief low down on our most deadly and dangerous.

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Saltwater Crocodiles

  • Contrary to it's name the Saltwater crocodile can also live in freshwater.
  • Being superb swimmers they are advanced and opportunistic hunters that have survived for approximately 55 millions years.
  • They can live to a ripe old age often in their 70's and older.
  • Saltwater crocodiles can grow over 5 meters long and be well over 1000 kilograms! Now that's one huge reptile. These reptiles live off a diet of small animals, birds, fish and crustaceans but have been known to kill water buffalo and humans. This awesome creature is not to be messed with.
  • Funnily enough crocodiles can clamp their jaws down with massive force but they have hardly any strength to open their jaw. This is why people tape the crocodile's jaws together when capturing them. Tape is strong enough to hold their jaw shut.
  • Crocodiles live in warm, usually murky, dirty waters around Northern Australia.
  • Crocodiles sometimes look like a lump of floating wood when they are just under the waters surface.
  • People living in the tropics of Northern Australia do not go swimming in the sea or estuaries. If visiting you would be wise to follow suit.

Inland Taipan.
Inland Taipan. | Source
Eastern Brown Snake
Eastern Brown Snake | Source

Snakes

Australia has many, many snakes so here we will mention the top two snakes that will kill with the least amount of venom. Drum roll please.... They are

1. Inland Taipan

  • Inland Taipan snakes also known as fierce snake are the most venomous snakes in the world with their venom ratio (tested on mice)but are actually rather shy.
  • The Inland Taipan can grow to over two meters long and are found in the the Northern Territory Queensland and South Australia. Their habitat is mainly soil plains.
  • Inland Taipans coloring ranges from a dark tan to almost a light olive. They can can their color from light to dark depending on the seasons. Their tails and sides can range from greys to browns and their scales can sometimes have a blackish edge.
  • Most snakes give one accurate bite but the Inland Taipan gives a rapid succession of bites. Up to seven bites in a row has been recorded each being delivered with venom. The snake is known to retreat after this to watch and wait for their prey to die.
  • They feed on almost only small mammals but if a human is bitten they can be successfully treated with anti venom.


2. Eastern Brown snakes

  • Eastern Brown snakes ( also known as a brown snake) - These snakes cause more death's in Australia then any other.
  • They are found all over Australia and thrive in almost any habitat but don't much like rainforest.
  • Unfortunately for us humans they love to live in populated areas and are natural foragers. Eastern brown snakes live on a diet of small mammals,rodents and small animals but also lizards and occasionally frogs.
  • The Eastern Brown snake can grow over two meters long.
  • They come in color ranges from rusts, tans, browns, greys and almost blacks with a cream to yellow underbelly. They can also have banding and spots on their underbelly.
  • They are known for there very bad temper and often strike when raising off the ground with their mouths open. Yikes, imagine that! If struck medical attention is needed immediately and can end in fatalities.

Sydney Funnel Web Spider

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Spiders

  • The Sydney Funnel Web spider is the deadliest spider in Australia according to Australian Geographic magazine.
  • The Sydney Funnel Web spider is found in New South Wales and Victoria. It burrows in the ground in moist, soiled areas and is found in environments anywhere from forests to backyards.
  • They can actually survive for several days underwater and are often found in backyard swimming pools.
  • Being a shiny black color of about 2.5 to 3 cm long, the Sydney Funnel Web have a purpley, brown abdomen which are covered in reddish hairs.
  • The female is larger than the male Funnel Web but the male is 5 times deadlier.
  • The female eats the male Funnel web after they mate.
  • You need to be careful walking barefoot in the dark as they become quite active at night.
  • This spider is very aggressive and has huge fangs, larger than a brown snakes. The fangs are so strong they can puncture through a toe nail. Eeeeek!
  • Injecting the large amounts of toxic venom when they bite luckily there is an anti-venom for Sydney Funnel Web spiders available in hospitals that is used very successfully.
  • The Sydney Funnel Web spider like to eat their meals in their burrows - very domestic of them- and live mainly on a diet of insects, beetles, cockroaches but are known to also eat frogs and lizards.


Box jellyfish

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Jellyfish

  • The Box jellyfish is classed as the deadliest jellyfish in Australia. There is another jellyfish that is so tiny and transparent that it often goes undetected, the Irukandji jellyfish. It is also highly venomous. Even so, the Box jellyfish has far more tentacles than the Irukandji jellyfish and can inject a lot more venom at once this way so is classed as the deadliest.
  • Deaths still occur every year from a Box jellyfish sting as their venom can cause cardiac arrest and kill with in minutes. Surviving victims are left with terrible scarring.
  • The Box jellyfish kill more people than Great White Sharks do.
  • They can apparently see and wrap their tentacles around their prey injecting their venom through thousands of tiny harpoon like stingers found on their tentacles.
  • They live near the coast of Australia and can be found in rivers, estuaries and the sea.
  • Jellyfish are pale almost see through with fully grown jellyfish reaching up to 30cm in diameter. They're tentacles which can be up to 3 meters long are usually very hard to spot and appear invisible.
  • If you find jellyfish tentacles wrapped around you cover them in vinegar. This stops the stingers firing off anymore venom apparently. Never remove the tentacles with bare hands as the tentacles can still sting even though they ave been ripped from it's body and rush to the hospital.

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Sharks

  • The Great White shark otherwise known as the White Pointer or White Death sort of gives you an idea of this sharks reputation. They are one super fast, ferocious fish.
  • The shark is found all around Australia preferring to be in shallow but warm waters with temperatures from 15 to 25 degrees celsius. Saying that, they have been spotted out in deep ocean water and at great depths.
  • They can live up to 30 years old.
  • Females tend to be longer in length than males and also dominate males. The Great White sharks can grow over 7 meters long being one of the largest sharks in the world.
  • There is not a whole lot known about these sharks habits but they are smart and deadly hunters using ambush tactics like the element of surprise. They can jump completely out of the water, hunt on their backs and have massive pressure when they clamp down their jaws.
  • Great Whites are carnivorous predators.
  • They prefer seals, sea lions, fish,small whales and sea birds as their food so it is thought that when there is a human attack they have mistaken us for a seal! If your swimming in our ocean and see a fin get out of the water fast....

Have you come across any of Australia's deadliest animals?

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Of course there are many more deadly animals in Australia. These are just a few but if your safe and aware they are also AWESOME to observe in the wild. Something, if you have the chance, do not miss.

Checkout Steve Irwin's Australia zoo website for more animals from Oz here

If you enjoyed my hub please check out my other hubs, comment, share and email the link to friends and checkout the items printed in blue for my recommendations and links.

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    • kidscrafts profile image

      kidscrafts 4 years ago from Ottawa, Canada

      OK.... one day I really want to visit Australia.... I will watch where I put my feet!

      Thanks for this hub with the detailed list of Australia's deadliest animals!

      Voted up and interesting!

    • Frangipanni profile image
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      Frangipanni 4 years ago

      Thanks kidscrafts, I wold love to go to Canada one day too!

    • kidscrafts profile image

      kidscrafts 4 years ago from Ottawa, Canada

      There are less crawling and biting animals here ;-)

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 4 years ago from sunny Florida

      The one place I wish to visit more than any other outside of my US is Australia. Even though you have shared this list of unfriendly natives, I still want to come there but will be watchful if I am in an area where I may encounter these. That Sydney Funnel spider is one I do not wish to tangle with...I like my toenails just as they are, thank you very much.

      Interesting and helpful...Sending Angels your way :) ps

    • Frangipanni profile image
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      Frangipanni 4 years ago

      Thanks so much pstraubie48 , you are welcome in Oz anytime. I'm glad your not put off by the creepy crawlies we have. Maybe I should do a hub on all the great things we have. MMMmmm

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