Dangerous Animals Australia
Australia is home to a huge variety of wildlife and fauna, many of them look cute and cuddly and will do you no harm as long as you respect their space and territory. Due to the different landscapes this means there are so many creatures calling this land home, alot of these can be dangerous to humans and domestic animals if not respected. Many of these creatures can even be deadly.
One of the most feared of Australia's animals is the Australian Salt water Crocodile, mainly found in the water ways of Northern Australia, interestingly they are not only found in salt water but they can comfortably live in fresh water as well. These creatures are huge they are in fact the largest reptile in the world, measuring between 6 and 7 meters long.
They have a huge head with an even bigger set of jaws, but are also known for their massive tails. Usually living on turtles, birds, fish and other reptiles, the Salt Water Crocodile has also been known to take down Cattle, Horses and Wild Pigs. Whilst Crocodile attacks are rare, the people that are usually attacked are those swimming un supervised by a local tourist guide in water ways they do not know. It is illegal in Australia to hunt and kill wild Crocodiles.
Australia is home to many different snake species. Many of these are venomous. Avoiding a snake attack is usually by using common sense. If you see a snake stand perfectly still, a snake is likely to take off when it first senses a human.
In no circumstance should you try and catch a snake or touch it, if a snake feel's cornered it may bite. The two most feared and most venomous snakes in Australia are the Tiger Snake and the King Brown or more commonly known as the Mulga Snake.
As well as snakes many Australians and tourists fear spiders and two in particular. These two spiders are the Sydney Funnel Web Spider and the Redback Spider.
The Funnel Web Spider is venomous however there has been an anti venom introduced in 1984 and know one has died from the result of a bite from a funnel web spider since this anti venom was introduced. If you are bitten by one of these spiders it must be taken seriously and you must seek medical assistance as soon as possible.
Funnel Webs tend to live in cooler climates but are found mainly in the Sydney, New South Wales area. These spiders are quite large with their body measuring 4.5 centimeters, they are completely black. Symptoms of a funnel web spider bite will include pain, numbness of the mouth, vomiting, abdominal pain, sweating and salivation.
The Redback Spider, is known to be deadly but in actual fact it is not. While a bite from a Redback can make you quite ill it will not kill you. Redbacks are usually only 1 centimeter at the largest and are mostly black with a red back, hence the name. Quite a common spider found all over Australia, however they tend to move towards cities and suburbia. If bitten by a Redback you may experience symptoms such as pain, sweating, muscle weakness, nausea and vomiting. Place an ice pack directly onto the bite area and it should help to relieve any discomfort. There is an anti venom available for severe cases.
In Australia's Northern Oceans is one of Australia's most dangerous and deadly creatures, although many won't realise this. The Box Jelly Fish calls these oceans home during November to April. They have a poisonous sting caused by their tentacles, the pain from a Box Jelly Fish sting causes excruciating pain and can effect the heart, the nervous system and the skin. In severe cases the victim can go into cardiac arrest.
If stung by a Box Jelly Fish you will need to inactivate the stingers this can be done by pouring vinegar over the jelly fishes tentacles. You will then need to seek medical attention and get an anti venom. The Box Jelly Fish is a transparent blue colour, they have a boxed shape head with each corner having 15 tentacles. A full grown Jelly Fish can be up to 20 centimeters on each box side. The larger the Jelly Fish the more deadly the sting.
Whilst in Australia it is best to check with the local tourist centres to find out where it is safe to go and where you may need a tour guide. Most hotels in locations where the Box Jelly Fish are located will advise you when the beaches are not safe to swim at.
Australia is a magnificent country, you must take care and travel safe. Check with the locals or a tourist guide to make sure you are in the right places.
Danger posed by animals
The risk of being attacked by a shark in Australian waters can be said to be equal to that in other countries which have extensive coastlines.
Also the risk of scuba divers being attacked by tropical sharks in the northern waters is low. There are not many great white sharks in the temperate waters in the south and this minimizes the probability of being attacked by sharks. For more detailed information on the local risk consult a surf life saving group.
In the tropical Australia found in the northern part of the country the risk of being attacked by crocodiles is real. The attacks though are predictable and can to a large extent be prevented from happening. Get information about the risk in a particular area from the police and the tourist agencies before engaging in sea or river swimming.
Australian snakes can be said to be dangerous in reference to the potential of their venom having fatal consequences. Even so the risk posed to travellers and the locals as well is quite minimal. Usually the snakes are timid and tend to move away when disturbed. They possess small fangs and this make it easier to prevent being bitten on the legs where around 80%of bites happen by putting on protective clothing for example gaiters, around the ankles. The marks left by the bite are very small and may even go unnoticed.
In a case where a bite is either suspected or confirmed, prevent the spreading of venom by doing the following:
- Apply pressure onto the wound
- Immobilize the area using a splint
- Wrap the entire limb firmly using an elastic bandage
- Get medical attention urgently.
Care should be taken not to wrap the limb so tightly cutting off circulation from the limb. These first aid measures are simple and easy to follow and they should be learnt earlier as they can save lives.
Some spiders found in Australia are poisonous.
Sydney web spider: A bite from this spider causes sever pain on the bite location. Other symptoms include sweating, vomiting, and abdominal pain. The area bitten should be immobilized and pressure applied. The victim should be rushed to a hospital where an antivenin will be administered.
Red back spiders: They are spread through out the country. A bite will cause pain at the site and increases in intensity. Profuse sweating follows as well as muscular weakness and nausea. For first aid, ice packs are applied then the patient rushed to the hospital.
White tailed spider: These cause bites that develop into an ulcer which heals very slowly. If bitten the wound should be cleaned thoroughly then medical assistance sought.