Have you ever wondered which animals pose the greatest threat to humans? While some animals, like sharks and wolves, are often blamed for attacks on humans, the statistics tell a different story.
In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the 15 deadliest animals on the planet, ranked by the number of deaths they cause each year.
Sharks: 6 deaths a year
Despite their fearsome reputation, sharks are not as dangerous to humans as many people believe. In fact, sharks only kill an average of 6 people per year.
Wolves: 10 deaths a year
While wolves are often portrayed as vicious predators in movies and TV shows, the reality is that they rarely attack humans. On average, wolves cause just 10 deaths per year.
Lions: 22+ deaths a year
Lions are responsible for a few dozen deaths each year, mainly in Africa where they are found. However, due to inconsistent reporting, it’s difficult to obtain accurate numbers.
Elephants: 500 deaths a year
Despite their gentle appearance, elephants can be incredibly dangerous to humans. They are responsible for an estimated 500 deaths each year, often as a result of humans encroaching on their territory.
Hippopotamuses: 500 deaths a year
Hippos are responsible for the same number of deaths as elephants, making them one of the deadliest animals in Africa. They may appear docile, but they are known to attack boats and people who stray too close to their territory.
Tapeworms: 700 deaths a year
While not a predator in the traditional sense, tapeworms are responsible for more deaths each year than many animals on this list. They can cause cysticercosis, a disease that kills an estimated 700 people annually.
Crocodiles: 1,000 deaths a year
Crocodiles are one of the deadliest animals in the world, responsible for an average of 1,000 deaths each year. They are found in many parts of the world, including Africa, Australia, and Asia.
Ascaris roundworms: 4,500 deaths a year
Ascaris roundworms are parasites that live in the small intestine and can cause ascariasis, a disease that can be fatal. They are responsible for an estimated 4,500 deaths each year.
Tsetse flies: 10,000 deaths a year
Tsetse flies are known for causing sleeping sickness, a debilitating disease that can lead to death if left untreated. They are responsible for an estimated 10,000 deaths each year.
Assassin bugs: 12,000 deaths a year
Assassin bugs, also known as kissing bugs, are responsible for spreading Chagas disease, which can be fatal. They cause an estimated 12,000 deaths each year.
Freshwater snails: 20,000+ deaths a year
Freshwater snails may seem harmless, but they can carry schistosomiasis, a parasitic disease that can be fatal. They are responsible for an estimated 20,000 or more deaths each year.
Dogs: 35,000 deaths a year
Dogs are responsible for a large number of deaths each year, primarily due to the transmission of the rabies virus. They cause an estimated 35,000 deaths annually.
Snakes: 100,000 deaths a year
Snakes are among the deadliest animals in the world, responsible for over 100,000 deaths each year. Most of these deaths occur in countries with limited access to antivenom, which can neutralize the venom of a snake bite. Some of the most venomous snakes in the world include the Black Mamba, Taipan, and Inland Taipan.
Humans: 437,000 deaths a year
Believe it or not, humans are responsible for more deaths each year than any other animal on this list. According to UN estimates, there were approximately 437,000 murders and suicides in 2012. While we are certainly capable of great good, we are also capable of great harm.
Mosquitoes: 750,000 deaths a year
At the top of the list are mosquitoes, responsible for an estimated 750,000 deaths each year. Mosquitoes are not only annoying, but they are also carriers of deadly diseases such as malaria, dengue fever, and Zika virus.
These diseases are especially prevalent in tropical and subtropical regions, where mosquito populations thrive.
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