An insect may not be the deadliest animal known to man but they sometimes pose a major threat to human life - tiny as they are. Insects have played major roles in history as seen in Biblical records and ancient Egyptian tombs. I'm sure we all remember Anasi the storyteller as a spider right? Well, although a spider isn't really an insect, because a true insect has a 3 segmented body and six legs; they have been adopted in stories and lores as one. The following are the top ten deadliest insects:
10. Hemiptera (Kissing bugs)
The kissing bug falls under the very wide Hemiptera family. The kissing bug and a few other insects feed on the blood of larger animals. It transmits the "Chagas Disease" which over the years can lead to heart disease, intestine malfunction and if left untreated can lead to death. No specific drug treatment has been satisfactory for treating this disease.
9. Asian Hornet or Giant Japanese
This insect can grow as much as 3 inches in length and can take down an entire hive of bees in just groups of 20 or 30!. Their sting contains a lot of toxins that can be fatal to human life. The hornet's sting has been known to be one of the most painful experiences for a human. The venom injected contains a high concentration of a pain causing chemical, Acetyl-choline, more than any other insect. A hornet sting also acts as a homing device for more attacks, funnily. The venom dissolves human tissues and produces a chemical that attracts other hornets to the victim. The Asian Hornet, like other hornets, stings repeatedly.
8. Siafu (African Ants)
These ants live and operate in colonies. A single community can comprise 20 million ants. They devour any moving thing in their endless search for food. Faced with so many venomous, stinging bites very few animals can survive an onslaught of the African Siafu ants. For humans, apart from the nasty stings, they can cause suffocation in infants and aged people, who may be slower to reacts. This can cause death. These insects have also been known to destroy thousands if dollars worth of foods. They devour anything in their path.
The wasp specie have a particular pest they prey on unless they feel threatened by any other animal/persons in their territory. Its single sting can cause people to go into anaphylactic shock and die.
The locusts are sub-families of the grasshopper that indirectly cause starvation because they feed on and wreck farmlands, crops and acres of cropland every year. Locusts swarm in millions and can devastate whole farmlands in minutes. They descend on and feed on anything green during an attack.
5. Fire Ants
These ants have their habitats in sand and soil. They feed on plants, crickets and smaller insects. Their sting has been described to be like "burning fire". That is how they got their name. The venom of a fire ant is more dangerous in larger doses - i.e when stung many times. Its more likely to happen because these ants move as an army in a swarm. Fire ants cause about 150 deaths per day and destroy millions of dollars worth of crops yearly.
4. Tse-Tse Fly
The tse-tse fly is the carrier of the trypanosomiasis (Sleeping sickness) disease. It feeds on the blood of vertebrates and has a death toll of 250- 300 thousand a year.
Bee stings can be nasty. Stung in the wrong place, the swelling can cause suffocation or any other impairment that may lead to damage or death. Some specie of bees are known to die immediately after stinging humans. One of the most ferocious specie is the Africanised or Killer bee. They attack at the slightest provocation in large numbers. Bees have a death toll of thousands in a year
Fleas are disgusting. Apart from the swelling they cause, they are responsible for the spread of the Bubonic Plague from their hosts to humans. Fleas causes millions of death due to their carrying dangerous virus.
1. Anopheles Mosquito
This particular specie of mosquito carries the dreaded and deadly malaria parasite. This insect has caused a lot of deaths - more than the rest of the insects combined. Their sting comes from sucking blood out of the victim. They feed by first injecting saliva to dissolve the flood. This saliva contains the malaria parasite. Africa is it's worst hit.