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6 Most Misunderstood Animals on the Planet

Updated on September 30, 2012

What is the first thing that comes to your mind when you think about cockroaches or rats? Naturally, most of us think that they are disgusting pests that are born on earth just to create havoc. Though there is some truth to this, there are certain misconceptions we have about these and many other creatures. Here is a list of six such most misunderstood animals that bear the brunt of our misconceptions.

1) Snakes

When we think about snakes, the first thing that comes to mind is their deadly venom and how they are always ready to strike at their enemies. The truth cannot be farther than this. First of all, all snakes are not venomous. Snakes such as tree snakes, sand snakes or rat snakes seldom carry any venom. Of course!! Cobras, vipers or rattle snakes are different. Secondly, snakes are shy and timid reptiles. If you stand in front of a snake, it is the snake that is more scared than a human being. Its readiness to strike is just its defense mechanism in the face of impending danger. Else, the first thing a snake would think of doing is hiding from danger. There is no history of any snake biting anyone voluntarily.

2) Owls

The poor owls are always associated with bad omen. They are associated with witchcraft or dark nights when spirits roam, just like a raven. However, this poor bird is just a nocturnal animal that lives on smaller creatures such as rats and other pests. In certain cultures, owl is also associated with being dumb. However, many people don’t know that an owl is a very intelligent bird. In fact, it is also revered as a god in certain cultures.

3) Sharks

Anyone who has seen the movie Jaws may be afraid of venturing near the waters due to the fear of the hungry shark waiting to grab any human being near the seashore. Though movies have glorified the ferociousness of a shark, the truth is a bit different from this. Sharks would definitely like to stay away from meat they are not familiar with. A shark may attack someone just because it mistakes the person to be a sea lion or some other animal. The great white sharks are known to have a very bad eyesight. The only way they can test what they are eating is by taking tiny bites of it. Human flesh is one of the last things a shark likes. Anyone who is attacked by shark may have lost a piece or two of their flesh and not the entire body.

4) Dolphins

You may ask me as to why dolphin would be one of the most misunderstood animals. Those cute, sweet and friendly mammals that are known for showing so many tricks cannot be ferocious, right? Well, there may be positive misconceptions as well. No doubt that dolphin is a friendly animal. But people who know the truth know that dolphins too are predators. They are powerful, intelligent, cunning, fiercely territorial and lethal killers. They can be quite unforgiving when they torment other animals and sometimes pups of their own species. There are few cases of attack on humans as well.

5) Cockroaches

Ah!! Those creepy, crawly disgusting creatures that thrive in the dark while destroying food!! That definitely is the first thing that comes to my mind when I think about cockroaches. What good can come out of them? Well... Actually, they are born scavengers. Most species of cockroaches live a typical insect’s life recycling decaying vegetation, helping in pollination and sometimes even preying on harmful insects. I bet, you didn’t know that they are hygienic creatures in reality. They perhaps keep themselves cleaner than many humans. They are just as dirty as their surroundings. It is extremely difficult for them to transmit dirt. So, if you are blaming a cockroach in your house for spreading diseases, you may want to first start blaming yourself for not keeping your house neat.

6) Porcupines

Now, how can a porcupine be a misunderstood animal? There are many people who fear porcupines and stay far from them because they think that these animals “shoot” their quills. Derek Small, the director of Wildlife Encounters Zoo says that this is not true. A porcupine cannot shoot its poisonous quills, but it can definitely release them into the face of some animal that starts sniffing it a little too close.

So, here is a list of 6 most misunderstood animals. What other animals would you add to this list?

A fun poll

Which one of these animals do you think are the most dangerous?

See results

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    • profile image

      Gun woman 3 years ago

      I have a snake, cockroach, and rat all living near me and I race care of them. I want part lion, though. Or porcupine.

    • karthikkash profile image
      Author

      Karthik Kashyap 3 years ago from India

      Thanks a lot for sharing creepkiller :) Keeping a cockroach a pet would be something I personally won't consider. But all have their own preference :)

    • profile image

      creepkiller37 3 years ago

      i like cockroaches and want to get one as a pet

    • profile image

      creepkiller37 3 years ago

      orcas are dolphins

    • profile image

      creepkiller37 3 years ago

      i once caught two snakes

    • profile image

      creepkiller37 3 years ago

      i only voted snakes because they are the only one to pose a small threat

    • BallaWitSwagg profile image

      Wouldn't you like to know 4 years ago from You wish

      Make a profile!!!

    • profile image

      shufflerbeast64 4 years ago

      All of this stuff is amazing,to know.

    • BallaWitSwagg profile image

      Wouldn't you like to know 4 years ago from You wish

      Yeah totally agree.

    • iguidenetwork profile image

      iguidenetwork 4 years ago from Austin, TX

      I've read long time ago time ago that cockroaches are even fastidious in their appearance.

      Very interesting and informative hub. Voted up and interesting. :)

    • profile image

      JmanShwagger 4 years ago

      Yeah..

    • profile image

      BallaWitSwagg 4 years ago

      I know right shuffler beast64.

    • profile image

      shuffler beast64 4 years ago

      Well,I honestly didn't know that dolphins were dangerous they seem so calm.I always thought that sharks were dangerous,but I guess I was wrong.But that is amazing about the cockroaches,how they are cleaner than most humans.Like all the stuff I just read was really interesting to me.

    • karthikkash profile image
      Author

      Karthik Kashyap 4 years ago from India

      Skylanders: Thank you :) I am not really sure if it can shoot its quills. Never tried sniffing it too close, you know ;)

    • Skylanders profile image

      Suzanne Kirkhope 4 years ago from California

      Very interesting stuff. Do people really think porcupines shoot out spines?!!

    • profile image

      AyyoJobliss 4 years ago

      I just looked at this and read the comments, That was so interesting! I did not even know all that! Well most of it! Cool!

    • profile image

      BallaWitSwagg 4 years ago

      Thanks both of you! You too!

    • profile image

      JmanShwagger 4 years ago

      Thanks you too! Happy Valentine's Day BallaWitSwagg

    • profile image

      This Girl 4 years ago

      Happy Valentines day!

      JmanShwagger! BallaWitSwagg! karthikkash!

      How do you pronounce that anyway?

    • profile image

      ThisGirl 4 years ago

      Yeah, they do not just attack. It is only when they feel like it.

      Quick Fact:

      Although its scientific name seems to be indicative of tree climbing, the black mamba is a terrestrial and diurnal snake.[24] It is known to be capable of reaching speeds of around 20 km/h (12 mph), travelling with up to a third of its body raised off the ground.[6] Over long distances, the black mamba can travel 11 to 19 km/h (6.8 to 12 mph), but it can reach a speed of 16 to 20 km/h (9.9 to 12 mph) in short bursts, and it has been recorded at speeds of 23 km/h (14 mph),[25] making it the fastest land snake in the world.[24] The black mamba is a territorial snake, having a favoured home usually in an abandoned termite mound, a hollow tree or log, or a rock crevice.

    • profile image

      JmanShwagger 4 years ago

      Yeah, you are very right, karthikkash, I totally forgot that part about them. Very true. =)

    • karthikkash profile image
      Author

      Karthik Kashyap 4 years ago from India

      This girl and BallaWitSwagg: I agree that snakes are deadly. However, snakes never attack anyone on their own. They attack only if their territory is threatened. Otherwise, they don't have a reason to attack anyone.

      JmanShwagger: True, dolphins are wonderful animals. But read again, why I have listed them as one of the most misunderstood animals. Also, many people may not this.. Dolphins are also sometimes called killer whales.. with a good reason. It is not without reason that sharks don't live where dolphins live.

    • profile image

      JmanShwagger 4 years ago

      Ooh sharks and snakes are so dangerous.....yeah

      They're really extremely bad, oh yeah, oh yeah, oh yeah, you know,

      But they are so awesome, yeah.

      Ooh sharks and snakes are so dangerous.....yeah

      They're really extremely bad, oh yeah, oh yeah, oh yeah, you know,

      But they are so awesome, yeah

    • profile image

      BallaWitSwagg 4 years ago

      I totally agree JmanShwagger. B.T.W. I totally love your name. But Yes Dolphins are really nice and they do not harm peeps.

    • profile image

      BallaWitSwagg 4 years ago

      Thank you for accepting my comment reader. =)

    • profile image

      JmanShwagger 4 years ago

      I have no idea why dolphins would be on there. Dolphins have saved peoples lives from sharks and from drowning. I would totally take them off the list. I do not agree with that.

    • profile image

      JmanShwagger 4 years ago

      I think that it is between sharks and snakes because there have been many attacks and kills from shars on ships.

    • profile image

      BallaWitSwagg 4 years ago

      I agree This Girl, snakes are deadly. VERY. Deadly.

    • profile image

      BallaWitSwagg 4 years ago

      This is very interesting. I like finding info that is very interesting. But My vote would have to be snakes, they are very deadly. i know even more then sharks. Because Snakes could be anywhere and sharks are in the ocean most likely will not bother you unless they sense blood but snakes to not care. Like the black mamba. e_e

    • profile image

      This girl 4 years ago

      Snakes are deadly

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