DEADLIEST ANIMALS IN AFRICA

Number 10. African Buffalo
Also known as the Cape buffalo, the African buffalo is one of the big five game in Africa – meaning it is one of the five most difficult African animals to hunt on foot. It is believed that this buffalo hurts or kills up to 200 people a year. As a result, they have a fearsome reputation – especially amongst hunters – so much so, that it has also been dubbed the ‘Black Death’ or ‘widow-maker’. Although it’s hard to pity poachers, they aren’t the only ones threatened by this beast.

The African Buffalo has also been known to attack the jeeps of safari park visitors! Seriously! But it’s not just human hunters or safari goers who need to be cautious around this deadly beast! Their lethal horns have been known to seriously injure or kill large predators, so hunting them is no easy task for hungry lionesses! What makes it worse for the lions and human hunters is that the Cape Buffalo are social animals, and if you annoy one, you might just find yourself in a sticky situation with multiple angry beasts charging towards you.



Number 9. Hippopotamus
Hippopotamuses are large, heavy mammals that love spending most of their time submerged in river and lakes. Although they are good swimmers and can hold their breath underwater for up to five minutes, they are normally large enough to just stand there, enjoying the water. Their love for water is the reason the Greeks named them river horses. However, these river horses are seriously dangerous to humans and other animals, and are considered one of Africa's most dangerous animals. Weighing up to 4 tons, they can, and will, easily crush a human to death. When you combine that with their sharp teeth and mobility both in and out of water, they are clearly fearsome beasts you wouldn’t want to approach.

Ironically, they are often depicted in children’s stories as harmless creatures, but this is far from the truth. If you see a hippo yawning or hear them making a laughing noise, don’t be fooled, these are signs of threat! Also, contrary to popular belief, there is a growing body of evidence that suggests some hippos sometimes eat other animals, but since their gastric systems aren’t designed to consume meat, scientists’ think that it’s very uncommon and likely only occurs when a hippo is deficient in a nutrient. Luckily, they don’t set out to hunt humans, but that doesn’t stop them from being dangerous. Whether it’s in a direct attack, stampede or by flipping boats in the water, it’s estimated that they kill up to 500 people each year.

Number 8. Puff Adder
Also known as Bitis arietans, the African Puff adder is considered one of the most common and widespread snakes found in Africa, however you won’t find it in the Sahara or in the rainforest regions. Nevertheless, due to its wide distribution across the African continent, its aggressive and venomous nature, and because it frequents highly populated areas, it is responsible for causing the most snakebite fatalities in Africa – making it one of the deadliest animals on this list. Its average size is about 1 meter (3.2 feet), but it has been known to grow as large as 1.9 meters (6.2 feet).

It can swim and climb low vegetation’s, and, thanks to its camouflaged colorings, it’s incredibly hard to spot on the ground. As a result, it’s very easy for people to step on changing it from being a relatively docile snake to one of the most dangerous animals in Africa. So, as long as you watch where you’re standing and don’t aggravate it, the Puff Adder will continue to go about it’s primarily nocturnal existence, praying on small mammals, birds, frogs and other small amphibians.

Number 7. African Elephant
Now this is one creature that is truly majestic. Elephants are highly intelligent and social creatures, and they have even been observed mourning dead relatives or other elephants they know. Their matriarchal system means the females are in control, while the males tend to leave the family group once they’ve reached a certain age. Elephants can hear across vast distances and can even hear approaching storms, helping them know exactly where to go for water. But these amazing creatures are also incredibly dangerous. Now, your highly unlikely to come across an African elephant outside of a controlled environment-unless you live in rural Africa.

But if you were too…be sure to take great caution - especially around males. The most common way they kill their victims is by stamping them to death - which I can’t imagine is a nice way to go! Some elephants have also been known to flip cars and stampede through villages. Unfortunately, these amazing creatures are an endangered species and are regularly hunted for ivory as one of Africa's big 5 game animals- something that makes them even more aggressive around humans. Conservationists have been working incredibly hard to save the African elephant, and hopefully we'll be able to enjoy this magnificent, dangerous creature for decades and centuries to come!

Number 6. Black Mamba
Along with the other snakes on this list, the Black Mamba is considered one of the deadliest snakes in Africa. They can reach up to 4.5 meters (14.8 feet) long, however the average is around 2.5 meters (8.2 feet), and they are highly venomous! They can also be highly aggressive when cornered and can reach speeds of up to 20km/ph (12 MPH), striking without warning. Like all the other animals on this list, they are known to attack humans, and without anti-venom treatment, the mortality rate is 100%.

In parts of South Africa, where the snake is common, their bite is commonly referred to by some as the ‘kiss of death’. Fortunately, attacks by Black Mamba are rare as they tend to try and avoid human contact – which is lucky for the people of Africa. Nevertheless, every-now-and-again, some unfortunate person stands or one or comes across one in the wild and, if they’re not careful, it’ll be the last encounter they ever have!

Number 5. African Lion
Lions are majestic creatures that once spanned across most of Africa – minus the central rain-forest zone and Sahara Desert - however in recent centuries they have been pushed to near extinction, so much so that they had been eradicated in the north before the end of the twentieth century. Hunting, habitat loss, and conflict with people have all contributed to their decline. Today, there are only around 20,000 left in the wild, and most of these remaining groups are in decline. As the most sociable of the big cats, lions live in groups called prides, and are the top predators in their environment.

As a result, they play a crucial role in keeping a healthy, balanced eco-system. Although they are rather lazy creatures, being mostly inactive for around 20 hours a day, they are not cuddle cats. They can kill prey a lot bigger and stronger than them, and have even been known to attack elephants. For the most part, they will stay away from humans, but if they’re hungry, annoyed or scared, you certainly don’t want to be anywhere near one! In all, they are responsible for up to 250 human deaths a year!

Number 4. Rhinoceros
There are two types of African rhinos, the black and white ones, and both are fighting for their existence. Due to the brutality of the hunting trade, from both locals and international game hunters, Rhino numbers are declining at an alarming rate! Nevertheless, just because there aren’t many of them doesn’t mean they’re any less dangerous. They are large mammals – second only to Elephants, and they can use their large horns with deadly affects.

As humans, we don’t really need to worry about Rhino attacks, it’s recommended to never get in-between a mother and her baby! And most attacks happen because humans are silly enough to try and get to close. Some of the telltale signs that you’re too close to a rhino is if you hear it making a loud snorting sound…back away at one. This is not something to be taken lightly, because if they start charging at you they’ll be coming at around 56 kilometers (35 miles) per hour!

Number 3. Nile Crocodile
As the largest freshwater predator in Africa, the Nile crocodile has been a feared animal for millennia, and they’ve been on the planet for around 200 million years! As far back as Ancient Egypt, the crocodile was revered as an exceptional animal that was considered one of the most dangerous animals they might encounter. Ironically, it was also considered a sacred animal by many Egyptian cults, and the god Sobek was represented by having a crocodile living in the temple.

Thankfully, today, most people know to stay well clear of this dangerous animal, but that hasn’t stopped it from attacking humans and livestock. Responsible for killing hundreds of people a year in Africa, most of the deaths occur when someone is washing clothes, fishing or collecting food near the banks of rivers or lakes. Crocodiles are known to drag their prey under water in order to drown it, sometimes rolling their bodies to weaken its prey. Footage of crocodiles attacking their prey is enough to show how quick and powerful these animals are!

Number 2. African Rock Python
This next creature on this list might not be as big as the others, nor venomous like some of the other snakes, but it is still a deadly animal. In fact, the African Rock Python is the largest snake in Africa which can measure up to 6 meters (19.7 feet) – which would make it as tall as a Giraffe! So, clearly not something you’d want to come across in the wild. Unlike the other snakes on this list, who utilize venom to kill their prey, the African Rock Python uses constriction and is even known to eat animals up to the size of antelopes.

While they are found across much of the African continent, it’s actually rather rare for them to attack humans. Nevertheless, there have been numerous reports of attacks, such as an incident in 2002 when a 6 meter (20 foot) long specimen consumed a 10-year-old boy whole! As I’m sure you’ll understand, this is one animal that should absolutely not be kept as a pet, but that hasn’t stopped some people from owning them, and in 2017, an unfortunate African Rock Python owner in England was asphyxiated by his own pet.

Number 1. Mosquito
After the variety of large, aggressive mammals and poisonous snakes already discussed in this video, you might be surprised to learn that this tiny little creature is the deadliest creature on this list! Yes, your heard right. And, while it’s technically not an “animal”…the mosquito is responsible for killing more humans per year than any other animal on this list. In fact, it is responsible for approximately 50% of all deaths in children under 5 years old. So, how does it do it? Well, it clearly isn't its weight, size or sharp teeth. Instead, this tiny little creature carries a virus that causes malaria - which is one of the world’s deadliest diseases, killing about 3000 children every single day. So, just remember, if you’re traveling to the beautiful African continent, don't forget your malaria tablets!

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