It goes without saying that once we enter the water, we are really just visitors in another world.
Every now and then, we are prone to have an unexpected encounter with what we call our most scary and “deadliest animals”.
Yes, these surprise encounters are definitely scary. Especially for the unprepared. In these types of situations the overreaction and resulting panic itself can be very dangerous. In fact, more dangerous than the actual encounter with these so-called deadliest animals because in the panic scenario a diver is prone to mistakes and misjudgments in managing their dives. In some of the worse cases novice divers may lose focus and make a bee-line to the surface (forget the deco stops and everything else).
If you really think about it, scuba diving really isn’t for the faint of heart even without considering a chance encounter with an angry deadly animal.
Scary encounters can be greatly mitigated by having an idea of what to expect. Becoming familiar with how various marine life typically reacts and interacts with divers greatly reduces the level of fear and makes for more enjoyable dives.
Although potentially scary/dangerous encounters do happen, they are fairly rare. In fact most of us go out of our way to find and have encounters with these deadliest animals of the ocean.
A recent post by Scubadiving.com highlights 6 “deadliest species” of marine life for daredevil divers looking for the exhilaration of a potentially dangerous encounter.
Their list includes:
Saltwater Crocs of Papua New Guinea – little changed in 200 million years, this salt water croc surpass the tiger shark in its reputation among divers and boaters. “The Indo-Pacific saltwater crocodile is the largest of all living reptiles, a formidable, opportunistic eating machine that’s posted a record size of 20-plus feet – and incalculable human fatalities in Papua New Guinea.” [H/T Scubadiving.com]. These crocs are considered too dangerous to observe in the wild and are only available for interaction in a controlled environment for diver safety.
Leopard Seals of the Antarctic – These guys grow to about 11 ft long and weigh about 1,200 pounds with the ability to travel at 25 mph. If that is not enough thy have large teeth and are known to be fairly interactive. Oh, and they are the only species of seals that hunt for and eat warm-blooded animals.
Bull sharks of Mexico – Averaging 9 ft and weighing about 300 pounds they live in both salt and fresh water. Their preference for warm shallow murky water is thought to contribute greatly to their attacks on people.
Blue Ring Octopus of the Philippines – only growing 5 to 9 inches, the blue ring octopus are exceptionally deadly. They are not aggressive and can be seen in and around open reefs. However they can deliver a deadly toxin that quickly causes paralysis.
Sea Kraits of Indonesia – related to their terrestrial counterpart, the cobra is highly venomous. Typically about 5 feet long . However, they occasionally can reach up to 10 ft in length.
Oceanic whitetips of the Bahamas – described by Jacques Cousteau as “the most dangerous of all sharks.” Oceanic whitetips are very large sharks, they are somewhat inquisitive. However, they are known aggressors in numbers when swarming and feeding.
Naturally there are quiet a few others ” deadliest animals” and dangerous scenarios that divers have found themselves in. You can find some of some of them in a selection of our posts at the links below.
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