Have you ever laid in bed at night, and as you’re just about to drift off to sleep you spot something out of the corner of your eye? Is it one of those creepy crawlies that have an uncanny ability to send chills down your spine?
No one likes to wake up to the sight of a bug crawling up the wall. While most bugs are harmless, there are those select few that inspire horror films and our worst nightmares. Here’s our list of the top 15 scariest and creepiest insects from around the world.
The Goliath Birdeater Spider
The name says it all. This gigantic spider is almost a foot in diameter. It’s known to munch on the variety of birds that live in the rainforest in its home region of northern South America.
These multi-legged critters are found all across the United States and are known to dart across the floor or lurk in your home’s dark corners as they hunt for pests to eat.
This next insect is something right out of “Invasion of the Body Snatchers.” Native to Central and South America, Human Botflies lay their eggs on mosquitoes, which then transfer them to humans. The larvae then burrow into the skin!
Africanized Honey Bee
Honey Bees, scary? This one is. Highly aggressive, they’ve been dubbed the “killer bee” and can attack in swarms. They are found mainly in South and Central America but beware, they are spreading into the southern United States.
The Camel Spider is a member of the arachnid family but is not truly a spider. Found in the desert environments of the Middle East and the southwestern United States, their bite isn’t venomous but it can cause a great deal of pain. Their sheer size (up to 6 inches long) is enough to give anyone the heebie-jeebies!
The Bullet Ant is one of the largest ants in the world, growing as long as 1.2 inches (3 cm). Its name comes from the pain of its sting – among the most painful in the world – because it feels like being shot. So if you venture into the rainforests of Central and South America, be on the lookout.
Japanese Giant Hornet
The Japanese Giant Hornet is the world’s largest hornet species, growing to about two inches long. This predator is a danger to honeybees and humans alike. The venom from just one sting can dissolve human tissue and can even be fatal.
The Titan Beetle lurks in the rainforests of South America. It’s one of the largest beetles, growing up to 6.6 inches long. While they don’t feed as adults, their strong jaws can snap pencils – or fingers!
Native to the desert regions of North Africa and the Middle East, the Deathstalker Scorpion is one of the most venomous and aggressive scorpions in the world. Its sting is extremely painful and its venom is potentially deadly.
Tarantula Hawk? The name alone strikes fear in your heart. You can relax knowing that it is not a massive flying spider. But it is a giant wasp that hunts tarantulas, armed with a sting that is excruciatingly painful.
Giant Water Bug
This massive predator is built to grab and consume prey several times their size, including small fish, amphibians, and other freshwater-based insects. They will bite humans and it will definitely hurt.
You don’t want to be on this insect’s hit list. The Assassin Bug can be found worldwide. The good news is that they feed only on other insects, injecting them with a lethal saliva that liquefies the insides of their prey.
“Sleep tight, don’t let the bed bugs bite.” If bed bugs are nocturnal and feed only on the blood of warm-blooded animals, primarily humans, then why aren’t they called Vampire Bugs? Probably because they get into your bed by hitchhiking on luggage, furniture, and even your clothes.
Speaking of vampires, these moths, found across Asia, earn their spine-tingling name thanks to the way they pierce the skin of fruit to feed on the juices. They will also feed on mammals and can suck blood for up to 50 minutes.
The Tsetse Fly is a bloodsucking insect local to sub-Saharan Africa. It’s a carrier of the African Sleeping Sickness, which is caused by a parasite transmitted through the fly’s bite. If untreated, it can be fatal to mammals and humans.
Bonus Scare – Black Widow Spider
We could not close out this list without mentioning one of the most spine-tingling creatures – the Black Widow Spider. The female of the species is known to cannibalize their male mates after copulation. Found in the southern and western United States as well as parts of southern Europe, Australia, Africa, and South America, their venom is highly toxic.
So, which insect is the scariest and most dangerous of all? While all the insects on this list have their fair share of scare tactics, the Deathstalker Scorpion and the Tsetse Fly have the deadliest potential due to their potent venom and disease-carrying ability.
Remember, they’re more afraid of you than you are of them. Well, most of the time. Sweet dreams!