There are a lot of animals and insects that people are afraid of because of things they’ve heard, or just how the thing looks.
That said, you can’t always judge a book by its cover – or it’s reputation – and these guys are all too often misjudged.
They probably won’t hurt you.
Survived ALL FIVE mass extinctions and we’re going to be the ones to wipe them out because a movie made us afraid and callous towards them.
You won’t get bitten.
Snapping turtles. So many people are afraid to move them out of the road. Just pick them up by placing both hands on the bottom of their shell on either side of their tails. You can safely move to almost halfway up the shell if the turtle is large (I carried one the size of a literal car tire in my arms once. It wasn’t happy, but it didn’t attack).
Most snappers have no interest in biting you. They’ll mostly open their mouths and hiss, but as soon as you get them in the air, they’ll forget about you and start moving their legs because they think they are swimming in the air. Seriously, they do. It distracts them. This is where you have to be careful not to drop them because their claws will hit your fingers as they “swim” and those claws are sharp.AdvertisementAdvertisement
If you get bitten, stroke the turtle gently up its neck and under its chin until it relaxes and lets go. But you won’t get bitten. I’ve been working with these guys for years upon years and have yet to be bitten. ::knock on wood::
Bats are one of the best pollinators in the world.
They ki** crazy amounts of bugs.
Most of them are completely harmless.
They prefer to avoid you.
Snakes, in particular are keenly misunderstood. In their preferred scenario, they would never encounter you at all; they would be aware of you and you would be oblivious to them. If they can effectively hide and let you pass by, they will. If they sense you moving toward them, they will seek deeper cover or flee, if they can.Advertisement
If you get closer still, they will realize that contact is inevitable; they can see how big you are and they know, they have an almost zero percent chance of escaping the conflict alive if you are hostile. Because, think about it- the snake doesn’t care if his bite hurts you or ki**s you; he’s just hoping he can hurt/scare you enough to leave him alone. Because even if you die in 20 minutes, chances are you’re still going to have the strength and survival instinct to ki** him before you die.Advertisement
He’s lost, regardless of what happens to you. Non-venomous snakes will use this as an absolute bluff, hoping that you’ll trust your instincts and drop them so they can escape. Their absolute priority is escaping the encounter as uninjured as possible.
Most venomous snakes even prefer not to waste venom on defensive measures; it’s a resource that requires energy to produce and they prefer to expend that resource on replenishing their energy by using it to hunt, not to fight for their very survival. So beyond loud hissing, physical signs of defensive behaviour; “hooding,” flattening, open mouth/fang display, loud and substantial rattling.
But even if you somehow manage to blunder your way through all that and still choose to “engage” he will give you a lightning fast lunge or bite (“striking” and “mock-striking”) but will inject no venom. It’s his little way of giving you a good backhand across the face and telling you, “back the f**k #OFF#, Bro, I’m f**king serious.”
Others, like the appropriately named “ball” Python who will, before even considering biting (except, like, hatchlings) will hide their head as they ball up and will generally just …pray? If snakes do that? Hope…? that whatever is threatening them will not fatally injure them or immediately consume them.AdvertisementAdvertisement
Others just go full ham and play dead.
Otherwise, they just want to eat you, because they’re hungry, non-discerning, and opportunistic. There’s no more malice in it than you making yourself a turkey sandwich. We see that with some large boas (incl. anacondas) and pythons, and some crocodilians who have either successfully consumed a human or fatally attacked one in a feeding attempt. There have been a variety of scenarios, including some accidents both freak and through negligent care.
Anyway, I’m a bit of a novice enthusiast, I suppose that’s a bit obvious. I’m also on Sativa for the first time in aaaaages.
Sometimes Hollywood lies.
F**k the Lion King for poisoning the minds of so many kids against Hyenas.They are basically a magical animal…
PERFECTLY adapted for every aspect of their lives, including being absolutely essential to the ecosystem they occupy.Advertisement
Hyenas hunt and eat prey, but the most important aspect is them eating the bones.The phosphorus that is excreted in their faeces quite literally feeds the soil so that grasses, flower and shrubs can grow there which many other species rely on for food
The females all have a pseudo-phallus, causing scientists to incorrectly believe they were hermaphroditic for decades, where the fact is it’s an anti-rape device so that they can absolutely pick and choose the strongest males to mate with
Even the shape of their body is fascinating, from the muzzle shape and wide bed of teeth, astonishingly powerful jaws and those long front legs which give greater visibility, but also more tearing power as they can use both their jaws, legs and neck strength to bring down a ki** or tear at it’s corpse.
They are my favourite animal and I keep learning more and more about them
A necessary job.
Vultures. Basically natures trash collectorAdvertisementAdvertisement
Fun Fact: The pH level of their stomach acid is the lowest of any animal in the animal kingdom. It’s acidity is so strong it can dissolve any organism, bones and all, which helps prevent the spread of diseases!
They don’t live very long though.
Apparently domesticated rats are intelligent, cuddly, and playful among having other good pet qualities.
Still don’t want one in my house tho.
Don’t let the horns fool you.
Rhinos, actually pretty gentle for their size.
Hippos are the real a$$holes.Advertisement
Tasmanian tigers were all snuffed out for eating sheep.
After they were all ki**ed it was discovered that their jaws weren’t strong enough to puncture sheep skin.
And they don’t have rabies.
Despite the mean mug and demon looking eyes they are not aggressive at all and are generally clean creatures.
You want them on your side.
In India crows are unholy according to religion, but they are known for their remarkable intelligence.AdvertisementAdvertisement
They can remember faces, recognize and imitate human voices, and even use cars to crack open nuts.
Don’t worry about leprosy.
Armadillos. Notorious for carrying pandemic level flesh eating diseases. In reality, extremely few are actually recorded to have said disease, which is easily treatable with antibiotics if symptoms even surface.
Usually treated by just washing one’s hands with soap. 95% of humans have a natural and highly effective defense against leprosy and Hansens disease.
No other choice.
They’re always interpreted as evil and highly predatory to humans and livestock. The truth is they’re way more afraid of us than them, and attacks on humans are extremely rare. They also only go after livestock if they have no other choice.Advertisement
Of course this is the majority cases. Wolves are fascinating in that they’re very intelligent and are closer to humans than we think. Some wolves and wolf packs are just a$$holes.
I love the trash cats.
Opossums. Friendly little guys just puttering around eating trash and bugs, humans are awful to them
One of the top 3 ways a wild Opossum dies is by bb guns or the infection from a bb shot into a non lethal body part
The next one is being run over, a lot of people do it on purpose. Then it’s exposure, they tend to hunker down when it’s cold even when their nests aren’t warm enough.
2 out of 3 of the most common ways an Opossum dies is by human hands, and that’s just not acceptableAdvertisementAdvertisement
Be kind to the trash cats, they evolved during the Cretaceous Period and we need to respect our elders
Pigeons. They’re completely domesticated animals that were kept by humans for thousands of years until they were just dumped on the streets en mass once they fell out of usefulness.
They’re not even native to most of the countries they’re found in and they still show a lot of color patterns that aren’t found in nature and were intentionally bred into their ancestors that were show pets.
I genuinely feel bad for them… people just call them ugly vermin when the only reason they’re there is because we abandoned them.
It’s the legs, isn’t it.
Daddy long legs spiders. They’re harmless, but they feel like they be crawling all over my soul.Advertisement
Calm and mesmerizing.
As a dive instructor, many client have fear with the fish. But they are really calm and mesmerising to see.
People are so weird.
One of the oldest superstition is a black cat is evil and will bring on bad luck. Black cats have the highest rate of euthanasia (74.6%) and the lowest rate of adoption (10.0%) of any color.
Don’t freak out.
Spiders. Especially Australian spiders. There’s only a couple you really need to worry about, the rest are great for catching annoying insects and actually deadly spiders.AdvertisementAdvertisement
‘Fun’ fact: one of the most ‘deadly’ spider in Australia is the huntsman, but not because it’s venomous. It’s because it climbs inside cars and chills on the visor, and when people drive on the highway they are like ‘ooh I can’t see’ so they pull it down and the huntsman fall in their lap. They freak out and crash the car
Cheetahs are actually very skittish animals to the point where they get therapy dogs at zoos.
I want to pet them all.
I’ll find the courage somewhere.