Indiana’s 10 Most Dangerous Animals and Wildlife
You will encounter a lot of cute and harmless animals throughout Indiana, but there are some that you should avoid at all costs.
Indiana is home to a lot of natural habitats and wildlife. Most of these animals are cute, cuddly, and harmless. Indiana isn't really known for having too many dangerous animals in the wilderness, but that's not to say that there aren't any. Which is exactly what this article is about. The most dangerous animals you might encounter in Indiana. Some of these animals are pretty obvious, while others might surprise you. A few of these animals are pretty common to run into at home or out in the wilderness. While others are pretty rare to see, but you can't rule out the possibility of encountering one in your lifetime. So, let's take a look at the most dangerous animals and wildlife that you might encounter in Indiana.
Ten Most Dangerous Animals and Wildlife in Indiana
10. Asian Needle Ants
These recently discovered invasive insects can deliver a painful sting. Just last year, they were discovered in Evansville! They typically hide under rocks and inside logs and are mostly found in forest areas. According to NC State Entomology:
First, its venomous sting is painful, and on average, somewhat more likely to cause an allergic reaction than the venom in a honey bee’s sting. As a result, people allergic to insect stings should take special care to avoid stings when in an Asian needle ant-infested area.
9. Mountain Lions
How many times have you heard stories about mountain lions roaming around in the wilderness in Indiana? We've all heard stories, here in southern Indiana about them in the coal mines. The chances of you actually running into one is pretty slim...however, there is still a chance. According to Animal Vivid:
Mountain lions are relatively silent predators, hunting for their prey mostly at night and often patiently waiting for a game or stealthily stalking it before attacking from behind and giving a lethal bite to the spinal cord.
Yes, deer! These are actually one of the most dangerous animals in the state, but not because they are vicious. It's because they are capable of causing moderate to severe automobile accidents. In fact, more than 14,000 deer-related crashes are reported in Indiana annually.
7. Kissing Bug
Another invasive insect in Indiana, known as Triatominae has been known to bite people in the face and infect them with a disease called Chagas. This disease has been dubbed the deadly "Kissing Bug." These insects are not something to mess around with. Some of the symptoms of Chagas are fever, fatigue, swelling, and a rash but it can be more serious causing strokes or even heart failure. Your pets aren't even safe from the triatomine insects, as Chagas can actually give your pets heart disease.
6. Western Cottonmouth Snake
If there's one thing that terrifies me in this world, it's a snake. Especially one like this. These snakes are also referred to as water moccasins. You can find these snakes in semi-aquatic areas in Indiana. Animal Vivid says:
Though they rarely bite, except when provoked, their venom is potent enough to enzymatically destroy the body’s tissue, causing necrosis, bleeding, and shock.
5. Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnake
Most people don't associate rattlesnakes with Indiana, but we do have them here. You'll likely find them in meadows, marshes, and majorly riverine areas. Luckily for us here in southern Indiana, we won't see them, as they are found in the northern half of the state. The Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnake has poisonous fangs that could inject lethal venom into the body of its victim...including humans. It's safe to say that you don't want to ignore emergency measures if you do get bitten by one of these.
4. Brown Recluse Spider
Everyone has a fear of finding one of these spiders in their home in Indiana, and rightfully so! Being bitten by one of these spiders is far from pleasant. Animal Vivid says:
The sting is primarily painless, but after about three to five hours, it becomes reddish, gives off a burning sensation, and turns into a necrotic blister.
3. Copperhead Snake
More snakes?! Yeah, Copperheads are pretty common in Indiana around wood piles, forests, marshy areas, and swaps. If you smell cucumbers outside, there's a chance that a Copperhead is near. That's the smell of the odor it releases when it feels threatened. The toxin from its venom can paralyze a person almost immediately, and death would follow within thirty minutes. So it's best to avoid these bad boys at all costs.
2. Timber Rattlesnake
The snakes just keep coming, and I am not a fan of having to find videos and photos of them at the moment! The Timber Rattlesnake can be found in wood piles, forests, marshy areas, and swaps in south-central Indiana. The bite of these snakes can be very deadly. According to Animal Vivid:
Although these snakes do not attack unless they feel threatened, their venom can destroy the walls of capillary blood vessels leading to severe internal bleeding.
Also, little can be done to save the victims’ lives once the poison gets to the heart. Other significant symptoms include lightheadedness, numbness in the feet or face, nausea, feeling faint, and immense pain.
1. Black Widow Spider
The most dangerous animal/insect found in Indiana is the Black Widow Spider. Despite their size, their venom is enough to kill a person. According to Animal Vivid:
A dose of their venom can prove lethal if left unattended because their venom contains a dangerous toxin called latrotoxin, which is fifteen times deadlier than the rattlesnake’s venom and capable of crippling the nervous system.
Symptoms that follow a black widow sting include chest pain, abdominal pain, nausea, general body weakness, vomiting, and fainting spells.
(H/T- Animal Vivid)
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