So, Halloween is done and dusted for another year. You’ve put away the props and shoved your costume in a box to sit in the garage until the festivities inevitably roll around again. Thought you were safe from spooks around every corner? Never! Mother nature’s got a whole host of creepy crawlies and scary bugs to keep you awake tonight, tomorrow night, and every night of the year! We’ve compiled a list of the spookiest, ghouliest and grossest scary bugs and creatures that you really wish didn’t exist.
This scary bug has made the news recently for being the most hellish beast that, surprisingly, lives on our doorstep! The creatonotos gangis has brown wings with red and black markings, with the creepiest ‘legs’ we’ve ever seen. These appendages deliver pheromones from the moth to attract a mate, but are proving repulsive to humans. You can find these little devils living in South-East Asia or Northern Territory and Queensland. Excuse us while we move to Hobart.
Here to haunt your dreams and give you a fear of the ocean just in time for summer! These fish are close in appearance to eels, but vary greatly in their anatomy. They have no jaw and no bones, with two rows of teeth-like structures lining their mouth which they use to chomp through and bury into their prey. The best part? They can expel a gross gooey slime when they’re threatened which allows them to make a slippery escape. All jokes aside, hagfish day occurs on the 3rd Wednesday in October to encourage conservation of the ocean’s recyclers, which are at risk of extinction.
Nicknamed the ugliest creature of the sea is the blobfish. Blobfish are made up of gelatinous tissue, with barely any muscle inside. Their jelly-like body is less dense than water, which means they can float just above the seafloor at staggering depths. They don’t hunt (which they can’t without muscle) but instead just wait with their mouths open to collect whatever is wading past. Blobfish are facing extinction from fishing nets dragged across the seafloor that collect the blobfish as collateral. So let’s roll up our sleeves and fight for the little guy! He’s kinda cute if you squint (really, really hard).
So, we’re back to the scary bugs, and can we go back to the blobfish now? The goliath spider is terrifying because A. it’s a spider, and B. it’s bloody huge and can even eat birds. It’s from the tarantula family and the largest of the species can have a leg span of up to 16cm! Their diet consists mainly of lizards, frogs and insects and, luckily for us, its bite is not lethal to humans. It lives in dry desert or rainforest regions in Australia so hopefully they won’t be climbing into your bedroom any time soon.
The giant centipede pictured up close looks like an alien creature here to claw out your eyes. Thankfully, they’re not really giant – they grow up to about 16 cm long, which makes them only slightly less terrifying. These guys have up to 23 pairs of legs, with their first legs acting like claws that deliver a powerful venom – not powerful enough to kill humans, but works on both small mammals and insects. Humans report a giant centipede bite to feel sort of like a wasp sting, with some unlucky folks describing the pain as “intense”.
So, which is the scariest creepy crawly of all? Tell us in the comments!
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Author: Eliza Brockwell
Eliza is passionate about creating content that encourages diversity of representation in STEM.