the 25 most dangerous insects on the planetBy Pictolic https://pictolic.com/en/article/the-25-most-dangerous-insects-on-the-planet1
The millions of species of insects that live on earth today play a crucial role in the ecosystem of our planet. Although most of them are safe, some can cause a person a lot of trouble, and some can be poisonous and even deadly. From the usual ants and flies to more exotic beetles, we offer you a list of the 25 most dangerous insects in the world.
Termites do not pose a direct danger to humans, they play an important role for the environment, moreover, in some cultures they are even eaten. But at the same time, baby termites can cause enormous damage to infrastructure, sometimes making homes completely uninhabitable.
Lice are wingless parasites that feed on skin particles, blood, and other secretions of the human body. Most often, the carriers of these insects are people. There are approximately fifteen different types of lice in nature. Like termites, lice do not always pose a direct threat to human health, but they can be carriers of diseases.
3. Black-legged tick
Every year, the black-footed tick infects thousands of people with Lyme disease, which begins with a rash around the bite that resembles the eye of a bull. Early symptoms of this disease include headache and fever. With the further development of the disease, the victim begins to suffer from problems with the cardiovascular system. Few die from these bites, but the effects can continue for many years after an unpleasant encounter with the tick.
4. Nomadic ants
The first creature on our list that is dangerous in the literal sense of the word is stray ants, known for their predatory aggression. Unlike other ant species, vagrants do not build their own permanent anthills. Instead, they create colonies that migrate from one place to another. These predators move constantly throughout the day, preying on insects and small vertebrates. In fact, the entire combined colony can kill more than half a million insects and small animals in a single day.
Most wasps are not particularly directly dangerous, but certain species, such as the German wasp of North America, reach large sizes and can be incredibly aggressive. If they sense danger or notice an invasion of their territory, they can sting repeatedly and very painfully. They will tag their aggressors and in some cases pursue them.
6. Black Widow
Although the sting of a female black widow spider can be very dangerous to humans due to the neurotoxins released during the bite, if the necessary medical care is provided in time, the effects of the bite will be limited only to some pain. Unfortunately, isolated cases of death from the bite of the black widow still occurred.
7. Hairy caterpillar of the Coquette Moth
The caterpillars of the Megalopyge opercularis Flirt Moth look cute and fluffy, but don't be fooled by their cartoon appearance: they are extremely poisonous.
Usually people believe that the hair itself is burning, but in reality the poison is released through the thorns hidden in this "wool". The spikes are extremely brittle and remain in the skin after being touched. The poison causes a burning sensation around the affected area, headache, dizziness, vomiting, sharp abdominal pain, lymph node damage, and sometimes respiratory arrest.
The cockroach is known as a carrier of many diseases that are dangerous to humans. The main danger of living together with cockroaches is that they get into toilets, garbage cans and other places where bacteria accumulate, and as a result, they are their carriers. Cockroaches can cause a variety of diseases, from worms and dysentery to tuberculosis and typhus. Cockroaches can carry fungi, single-celled organisms, bacteria and viruses. And here's a fun fact — they can live for many months without food and water.
9. Parasitic worms
Parasitic worms are a type of eukaryotic parasite. Most parasitic worms are known to live in the digestive tract of humans and cause insomnia, vomiting, nausea, and other health problems.
10. Bed bugs
A person does not feel the bite itself directly, since the composition of the saliva of the bug includes an anesthetic substance. If the bug couldn't get close to the blood capillary the first time, it can bite a person several times. At the site of the bug bite, severe itching begins, and a blister may also appear. Occasionally, people experience a severe allergic reaction to a bug bite. Fortunately, 70 percent of people feel almost no consequences from them.
Bedbugs are household insects and do not belong to the group of carriers of infectious diseases, but in their body they can long retain pathogens that transmit infections through the blood, for example, viral hepatitis B, as well as pathogens of plague, tularemia, Q-fever. They cause the greatest harm to people with their bites, taking away normal rest and sleep from a person, which can subsequently negatively affect moral health and performance.
11. Human gadfly
Human gadflies have larvae that can transmit life-threatening parasites to humans. Also known as torsalo, human gadflies are commonly transmitted by mosquitoes. When a mosquito carrying a human gadfly larva lands on the skin, the larva enters the host body. After a few days, it grows under the skin and can cause a serious infection if the bite site is not treated immediately.
The centipede (Scutigera coleoptrata)is an insect, which is also called a flycatcher, appeared presumably in the Mediterranean. Although other sources speak of Mexico. The centipede has become very common all over the world. Although the species is unattractive, they generally perform useful work, as they eat other insect pests and even spiders. However, with entomophobia (fear of insects), this argument will not help. Usually people kill them because of their unpleasant appearance, although in some southern countries centipedes are even protected.
The flycatcher is a predator, they inject the victim with poison and then kill it. Flycatchers often settle in apartments without harming food or furniture. They love moisture, often centipedes can be found in basements, under baths, in toilets. Flycatchers live from 3 to 7 years, newborns have only 4 pairs of legs, increasing them by one with each new molt.
Usually, the bite of such an insect is not disturbing to humans, although it can be compared to a small bee sting. For some, it may even be painful, but usually it is limited to tears. Of course, centipedes are not insects that are responsible for thousands of deaths, but many of us will be surprised to learn that every year someone dies from these bites. The fact is that an allergic reaction to insect venom is possible, but this still happens extremely rarely.
13. Black Scorpion
Although scorpions are not insects, as they belong to the order of arthropods from the class of arachnids, but we still included them in this list, especially since black scorpions are the most dangerous types of scorpions. Most of them live in South Africa, especially often they can be found in desert areas. Black scorpions are distinguished from other species by their thick tails and thin legs. Black scorpions sting by injecting their prey with venom that can cause pain, paralysis, and even death.
14. Predatory Bird
Another blood-sucking predator, aka Assassin bug, aka Reduviidae. Their main diet consists of insects and their larvae, but some tropical species are not averse to drinking the blood of small animals and even humans. The carnivore is responsible for the transmission of Chagas disease, this parasitic beetle often infects people living in poor rural areas.
Paraponera clavata is a species of large tropical ant in the genus Paraponera Smith and the subfamily Paraponerinae (Formicidae), with a strong sting. This ant is called a bullet for the reason that the victims of the bite compare it to a shot from a gun.
A person bitten by such an ant may feel a throbbing and relentless pain for a day after the bite. Some local Native American tribes (Satere-Mawe, Maue, Brazil) these ants are used in the very painful rites of initiation of boys to adulthood (which leads to temporary paralysis and even blackening of stung fingers). In the course of studying the chemical composition of the venom, a paralyzing neurotoxin (peptide), called poneratoxin, was isolated from it.
16. Brazilian wandering Spider
Also known as Phoneutria, Brazilian wandering spiders are venomous creatures that live in tropical South America and Central America. In the 2010 Guinness Book of World Records, this type of spider was named the most venomous spider in the world.
The venom of spiders in this genus contains a powerful neurotoxin known as PhTx3. In lethal concentrations, this neurotoxin causes loss of muscle control and breathing problems, leading to paralysis and eventually suffocation. A bite of moderate soreness, venom causes instant infection of the lymphatic system, getting into the circulatory system in 85% of cases leads to heart failure. Patients feel a wild rigor mortis during life, men sometimes have priapism. There is an antidote, on a par with antibiotics, but due to the severity of the damage to the body by the poison, the detoxification procedure is actually equal to the victim's chance of survival.
17. Malarial mosquito
Malarial mosquitoes, or anopheles, are a genus of dipterous insects, many species are carriers of human parasites-malarial plasmodia. The mosquito is infected with malarial plasmodium from a human patient or carrier. Malarial plasmodium passes through the sexual reproduction cycle in the mosquito's body. An infected mosquito becomes a source of infection for a person 4-10 days after infection and is such for 16-45 days. Mosquitoes also serve as carriers of other plasmodium species that cause malaria in animals.
18. Rat fleas
Rat fleas — one of the most dangerous species of fleas (Pulicidae), a vector of plague. They are parasites of rats (Rattus, Nesokia) and gerbils (Gerbillinae). They are carriers of the plague bacillus (Yersinia pestis) and Rickettsia typhi, as well as intermediate hosts of the parasitic worms rat catnip Hymenolepis diminuta and mouse catnip Hymenolepis nana. Diseases can be transmitted from one generation to another through eggs.
19. African Honey Bee
African bees (also known as killer bees) are the descendants of bees brought from Africa to Brazil in the 1950s in an attempt to improve the country's honey production. Some African queens began to interbreed with native European bees. The resulting hybrids moved north and are still found in Southern California.
African bees look the same and in most cases behave like the European bees that currently reside in the United States. They can only be detected by DNA analysis. Their stings also do not differ from the sting of an ordinary bee. One very important difference between the two species is the protective behavior of African bees, which manifests itself when protecting their nest. In some attacks in South America, African bees have killed livestock and people. This behavior earned the AMP the nickname "killer bees".
In addition, this type of bee is known for behaving like an invader. Their swarms attack the hives of the common honey bee, invading them and establishing their queen. They attack in large colonies and are ready to destroy anyone who encroaches on their uterus.
Despite the fact that fleas are not usually perceived as dangerous, fleas transmit numerous diseases between animals and people. Throughout history, they have contributed to the spread of many diseases, such as the bubonic plague.
21. Fire Ants
Fire ant — several related ants from the group of species Solenopsis saevissima species-group of the genus Solenopsis, with a strong sting and venom, whose effect is similar to a burn from a flame (hence their name). More often, this name refers to the invasive red fire ant, which has spread around the world. There are known cases of stinging a person by a single ant with severe consequences, anaphylactic shock, up to a fatal outcome.
22. The Brown Recluse Spider
The second spider on our list, the brown hermit, doesn't release neurotoxins like the black widow. Its bite destroys tissue and can cause damage that will take months to heal.
The bite very often goes unnoticed, but in most cases, the sensations are similar to those of a needle prick. Then, within 2-8 hours, the pain makes itself felt. Further, the situation develops depending on the amount of poison that has entered the blood. The venom of the brown hermit spider is hemolytic, which means that it causes necrosis and tissue destruction. A bite for young children, the elderly, and sick people can be fatal.
23. Siafu ants
Siafu (Dorylus) - these nomadic ants mainly live in East and Central Africa, but are also found in tropical Asia. The insects live in colonies that can number up to 20 million individuals, all of them blind. They make their journeys with the help of pheromones. The colony has no permanent place of residence, moving from place to place. During the movement to feed the larvae, insects attack all invertebrates.
Among such ants there is a special group — soldiers. They can sting, for which they use their hook-shaped jaws, and the size of such individuals reaches 13 mm. The soldiers ' jaws are so strong that in some places in Africa they are even used to fix the seams. The wound may be closed for as long as 4 days. Usually, after a Siafu bite, the consequences are minimal, you do not even need to call a doctor. However, it is believed that young and elderly people are particularly sensitive to the bites of such ants, there have been deaths from complications after contact. As a result, every year, according to statistics, from 20 to 50 people die from these insects. This is facilitated by their aggressiveness, especially when defending their colony, which a person can accidentally attack.
24. Giant Asian Bumblebee
Many of us have seen bumblebees — they seem quite small, and there is no particular reason to be afraid of them. Now imagine a bumblebee growing up on steroids, or just look at an Asian giant. These hornets are the largest in the world — their length can reach 5 cm, and the wingspan is 7.5 centimeters. The length of the sting in such insects can be up to 6 mm, but neither a bee nor a wasp can compare with such a bite, bumblebees can also sting repeatedly. Such dangerous insects are not found in Europe or the United States, but traveling through East Asia and the mountains of Japan, you can meet them. To understand the consequences of the bite, it is enough to listen to eyewitnesses. They compare the sensation of a bumblebee's sting to a hot nail driven into a leg.
Sting venom has 8 different compounds that cause discomfort, damaging soft tissues and creating a smell that can attract new bumblebees to the victim. People who are allergic to bees can die from the reaction, but there are cases of deaths due to the poison of mandorotoxin, which can be dangerous if it gets deep enough into the body. It is believed that every year about 70 people die from such bites. Curiously, the sting is not the main hunting tool of bumblebees — they crush their enemies with large jaws.
25. Tsetse Fly
The tsetse fly lives in tropical and subtropical Africa, having chosen the Kalahari and Sahara deserts. Flies are carriers of trypanosomiasis, which lead to the disease of animals and humans with sleeping sickness. Tsetse are anatomically very similar to their usual relatives — they can be distinguished by the proboscis on the front of the head and the special way of folding the wings. It is the proboscis that allows you to get the main food-the blood of wild mammals in Africa. On this continent, there are 21 species of such flies, which can reach a length of 9 to 14 mm.
Do not consider flies so harmless to humans, because they really kill people, doing it quite often. It is believed that in Africa, up to 500 thousand people are infected with sleeping sickness, carried by this particular insect. The disease disrupts the activity of the endocrine and cardiac systems. Then the nervous system is affected, causing confusion in consciousness and sleep disorders. Bouts of fatigue are replaced by hyperactivity.
The last major epidemic was recorded in Uganda in 2008, in general, the disease belongs to the list of forgotten in the WHO. However, in Uganda alone, 200 thousand people have died from sleeping sickness over the past 6 years. It is believed that this disease is largely to blame for the deterioration of the economic situation in Africa. It is curious that flies attack any warm object, even a car, but they do not attack a zebra, considering it only a flash of stripes. Tsetse flies also saved Africa from soil erosion and overgrazing caused by cattle.
Man came up with different methods of dealing with these insects. In the 30s, all wild pigs were destroyed on the west coast, but this only gave the result for 20 years. Now they are fighting by shooting wild animals, cutting down shrubs and treating male flies with radiation in order to deprive them of the opportunity to reproduce.