Australia is known as a beautiful country, with great surfing beaches and endless roads. But Australia is also known for having some of the most dangerous animals on the planet. Here is a list of Animals I encountered while living in Oz with which you don’t want get as close as I did.
1. The Tiger shark I encountered while being on a sailing trip around the Whitsunday’s. On the last day of our cruise we stopped at a little bay to do some snorkeling. The dinghy brought us to the reef and after half an hour I was too tired so I decided to swim back through the open water back to the boat instead of waiting for the tender to pick me up. While swimming, I noticed a shadow around me the whole time but I thought that it was a school of fish in the dark water. When I got out of the water and took my Stinger suit off I saw that it was a 10 foot (3 meters) Tiger Shark.
Tiger sharks are the most dangerous of all sharks in Australia. They can ofter grow over 16 foot in length and can often be seen close to coasts. There are more recorded shark attacks from Tiger Sharks than from Great White Sharks. In the last 50 years 11 people died at a shark attack in Australian waters.
2. Under the water you can find a lot of deadly animals in Australia. One of the deadliest is the Box Jellyfish. On his account go more deadly incidents than from Sharks, Snakes and Crocodiles together. Since 1884 about 70 deaths have been recorded due to jellyfishes. During stinger season (December to May) especially in northern Australia it is mandatory to wear stinger suits when going swimming. You don’t want to get in contact with theses jellyfish. People who had an encounter with a box jellyfish say that it feels more like an electrical shock than a burn.
3. In an area in central Australia where a lot of travelers and tourists will not go you can find the Inland Taipan. The snake which can reach a length of 8.2 ft (2.5 meters) is known as the most venomous snake in the world. Australia only has “2-3” reported deaths caused be the Inland Taipan. While driving from the Uluru to Adelaide I stopped at the side of the road for a break and found an Inland Taipan next to my car. I decided that it was better to take a break somewhere else!
4. If you drive around Northern Queensland and Northern Territories you will most likely see some creeks and lakes with signs warning you of crocodiles. While wandering around Magnetic Island, which is famous for the koala population on the island, I spotted a Saltwater Crocodile sunbathing on a sand bank. Magnetic Island is not known for being a residence for crocodiles. But Salties have even been spotted in Brisbane. That’s quite a big journey and a distance of nearly 2000 km’s to swim.
5. Found in nearly all Australia, the Red back Spiders can easily kill a human. While living in the city center of Brisbane I encountered many of these black spiders with their name giving red dot on their back. A friend of mine was bitten by one while playing with the children in the garden but a quick ride to the hospital can easily safe somebody from death.
6. If you believe it or not but Cone shells can be pretty painful. When walking around the beach be careful picking them up, they sting you by pushing their tail out. They are to a certain degree poisonous.
7. If you go camping at Fraser Island you will definitely encounter Dingos. When hiking through the bush I was followed by two Dingos. They tried to surround me, it is important that you don’t panic and run away. Instead keep calm and relax and don’t look at them. Wait a little, normally they will back off automatically and if they don’t make loud noises, dingos are very shy animals. When camping with infants take good care of them, on Fraser Island some children have been killed by them in the past.
8. Mostly spotted off the coast of South Australia but also on the east and west coast of Australia the Great White Shark is also one of the most dangerous animals in Oz. The last recorded great white shark attack was in February of this year when a Diver was killed by 2 great white sharks. I wanted to go cache diving in Port Lincoln but after my encounter with the tiger shark on the Whitsunday’s I skipped that!
9. If you like to dive be careful of the Blue Ring Octopus. It is one of the most toxic sea creatures in Australia and as small as a golf ball. Until today no antidote has been found for the powerful venom of this octopus. While Diving off the coast of New South Wales my Dive instructor tried to show me one, I couldn’t really see it but I’m happy that I didn’t got really close to it!
10. Koalas, Kangaroo, Camels, Wombats, Possums are very cute but can also be very dangerous when you run one over with your car in the middle of the night in the outback. They can cause major damage to cars and to their passengers. A friend of mine told me a story of a truck driver who after sunset drove over a hill with a road train and found about 10 Camels laying on the street and hit them. When conscious again he found himself and the road train in the sand and a camel head next to him.