The Deadliest Animals You Will Find In Each US State

By Nick Hadji 1 year ago

1. Arkansas - Black Bear

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The black bear is a common predator in North America, but that doesn't mean you should underestimate them. Though they were actually hunted to complete extinction in Arkansas in the 20th century, today, they're thriving, and hikers and campers should be particularly wary.Sourced from Femanin.

2. Alaska - Polar Bear

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Alaska is certainly the only place in the US where you have to worry about being attacked by a polar bear. There's plenty of wilderness in this northernmost state, and though there are only around 5,000 in the whole state these days, they can still be deadly. They're bigger than a grizzly bear, and because they aren't as used to humans, they are more likely to attack.

3. Arizona - Gila Monster

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Ever heard of the Gila monster? They're a familiar sight if you live in Arizona, and tales of their deadliness go way back. In fact, old travelers in the West believed that even a Gila monster's breath could kill you! In fact, they do have a venomous bite, which can cause swelling and difficulty breathing, so if you see one, steer clear.

4. Alabama - Brown Recluse Spider

Brown Recluse Spider

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If you live in the north of Alabama, you might have come across one of these horrible critters before. Brown recluse spiders hide wherever it's warmest, meaning you could find them anywhere, from an empty cardboard box in a garage to inside your shoes! Despite being small, they're extremely dangerous - one bite will set off a chain reaction of tissue death. Ew.

5. California - Arizona Bark Scorpion

Arizona Bark Scorpion

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Although this critter bears the name of another US state, it's actually a common site over the border in California. The Arizona bark scorpion is actually the most deadly scorpion in the US and tends to adapt to its habitat, making it difficult to spot. Some even like to crawl into houses and hide in dark corners!

6. Colorado - Mountain Lion

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The mountain lion is certainly a formidable predator, and Colorado has a lot of them - some estimates say up to 7,000. They're unlikely to wander into built-up suburbs, but if you encounter one of them on a hike in the foothills, it's vital that you remain calm and back away slowly - they have a vicious bite.

7. Connecticut - Coyote

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Ah, Connecticut - home of cozy autumn towns and also some deadly predators. Coyotes are a menace throughout the US, especially if you don't expect to see one, which might the case if you're hiking in Connecticut. Some people mistake them for a common dog or a fox and underestimate their bite.

8. Delaware - Kissing Bug

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Sadly, this critter is actually a lot more dangerous than it sounds. The kissing bug is the nickname of the deadly Triatominae bug, which is a recent addition to a list of Delaware's scariest residents. Kissing bugs tend to bite faces and are particularly active at night. If you do get bit, you might develop a disease that can cause cardiac problems. Don't get kissed!

9. Florida - Eastern Diamondback Snake

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Ah, we've hit our first snake on this list! Rest assured, there will be plenty more, but for now, let's talk about the Eastern diamondback. There are actually six venomous snakes in Florida, but Eastern Diamondbacks have the record for the most deadly snakebites ever recorded in the state.

10. Georgia - Bobcat

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A bobcat doesn't sound like much, but actually, it can be deadly when provoked. They're especially tetchy around their young, and many people assume that because of their cute cat looks, they won't bite - in fact, they can get extremely aggressive, so it's best to steer clear.

11. Hawaii - Box Jellyfish

Box Jellyfish

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Of course, it makes sense that Hawaii's deadliest creature is found in the water. The box jellyfish has a reputation for being one of the most venomous predators in the world, so if you're out swimming in Hawaii, you might want to keep your wits about you just in case. Their toxins could cause you to die of heart failure pretty quickly.

12. Idaho - Wild Bison

Wild Bison

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Idaho is where you'll find Yellowstone National Park, a huge sprawling area filled with plenty of predators. One of the most deadly is the wild bison, so it's best if you see one not to approach it for a picture. It might feel threatened and charge at you, resulting in a messy death.

13. Illinois - Copperhead Snake

Copperhead Snake

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Did you know that the original story that inspired Snakes on a Plane happened in Illinois? The state is home to 40 different species, four of which are poisonous. One of those is the copperhead snake, a jazzy-looking creature that can seek shelter among human habitats in farm buildings, junkyards, and sawdust piles. They're also most likely to bite out of all US snakes, so maybe don't get too close to one.

14. Indiana - Black Widow Spider

Black Widow Spider

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The Black widow spider must be one of the most recognizable deadly creatures in the world. Sadly, it's found all throughout the US, including in Indiana, where it's one of the most dangerous creatures around. A black widow bite can cause nausea, severe cramps, and difficulty breathing.

15. Iowa - Rattlesnake


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The rattlesnake is probably the species most associated with snakes. That creepy rattle would frighten just about anyone! But if you live in Iowa, you're more than likely to see one. They're found all over the state and are very likely to strike if threatened.

16. Kansas - Hornet


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Is a hornet really that dangerous, you say? Well, you've clearly never come up against a Kansas hornet. In fact, hornets release more venom per sting than any other insect, and it can lead to reactions such as anaphylaxis, where you'll your throat can close up and restrict airflow.

17. Kentucky - White-Tailed Deer

White Tailed Deer

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No, we're really not joking. Though Kentucky has its fair share of deadly animals - including ones that have appeared elsewhere on this list, like the rattlesnake and black widow spider - the deadliest animal in the state is actually the white-tailed deer. There are so many deer in the state that driving is especially dangerous, with this animal causing a huge number of car crashes and deaths.

18. Louisiana - Water Moccasin

Water Moccasin

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You'll recognize this creature from other spots on this list. Actually, water moccasin is just another name for the deadly cottonmouth snake, identifiable by the white lining inside its mouth. This is one of the most common snakes found in the state, but the water moccasin is the only venomous water snake in Louisiana, so you should be especially wary of water.

19. Maine - Moose


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Up in the wilds of Maine, there are more large dangers than small insects. One of these huge animals is the moose, which is far more dangerous than it looks at first. Did you expect it to be quite slow for its size? Then you'd be wrong! These things can run fast, so try not to upset one, or you could be at the receiving end of one of its deadly antlers.

20. Maryland - Timber Rattlesnake

Timber Rattlesnake

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There are actually 27 different types of snakes in the central state of Maryland, though the timber rattlesnake is probably one of the most dangerous. You'll know this snake by its characteristic rattle, and by the time you've heard that, it's probably time to clear off.

21. Massachusetts - Lion's Mane Jellyfish

Lions Mane Jellyfish

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Did you expect the deadliest animal in Massachusetts to be a jellyfish? Though the state lies on the Atlantic, it's not the kind of animal you'd expect to keep on the lookout for. However, in recent years, beaches in the state have seen visits from the deadly lion's mane jellyfish. If you get stung, you could have a deadly allergic reaction, resulting in death.

22. Michigan - Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnake

Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnake

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As with many states in the US, Michigan is also home to venomous snakes. The Eastern Massasauga rattlesnake is the only venomous snake in the state, though, making it probably the most dangerous animal you'll encounter. The trick is not to provoke it if you do see one, as its bite can cause severe damage to your circulatory system.

23. Minnesota - Bison


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There's a lot of wild land in Minnesota, so it makes sense that bison call the state their home. They're actually one of the most dangerous animals in the entire US due to their temperamental nature and speed. If you see one in the wild, definitely don't get close, or you could expect some broken bones or, worse, death.

24. Mississippi - Pygmy Rattlesnake

Pygmy Rattlesnake

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Don't be fooled by this snake's name - the pygmy rattlesnake might be on the smaller side, but its venom can still kill. This is one of the state's most commonly spotted deadly creatures and has the nickname the "ground rattler" thanks to its offputting sound. If you see one, back away slowly.

25. Missouri - Osage Copperheads

Osage Copperhead

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Missouri is another state home to a huge number of snakes - incredibly, scientists have recorded up to 47 different species of the snake within its borders! Five of these snakes are venomous, including the deadly Osage copperhead, so you should definitely be careful when hiking in Missouri.

26. Montana - Pronghorn


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How can an animal that's so cute be so dangerous? The pronghorn is a peculiar type of deer commonly found in Montana, and if you see one, you should definitely keep your distance. In fact, the pronghorn can run up to 70km per hour and will charge at you if it feels that you're threatening it or its family.

27. Nebraska - Prairie Rattlesnake

Prairie Rattlesnake

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The prairie rattlesnake is one of four venomous snakes within Nebraska's borders. However, this snake is the one you're most likely to see when out and about. It usually keeps to prairies, canyons, or rocky outcrops and will definitely bite if provoked.

28. Nevada - Bark Scorpion

Bark Scorpion

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Nevada has a large range of deadly animals, including some snakes and poisonous spiders. However, the reigning deadliest animal is definitely the bark scorpion. If you come across one on your travels, stay away, as its bite can cause severe pain, convulsions, and sweating. Ew!

29. New Hampshire - Moose


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No, we're not done with moose on this list! They're a common sight in the Eastern United States, so it makes sense that they're also the most deadly animal you'll encounter in New Hampshire. Though there haven't yet been any recorded deaths, you definitely don't want to get on the wrong side of the moose.

30. New Jersey - Sharks

Great White Shark

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Did you expect there to be sharks in New Jersey? Actually, over the course of history, there has been some huge shark scares in the state, including in the Jersey Shore shark attacks of 1916, when five people were attacked in just a short period of time. Today, sharks are still regularly spotted off the coast.

31. New Mexico - Coral Snake

Coral Snake

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The coral snake is just one venomous snake found in New Mexico, but this one is actually native to the state. This means you're more likely to see it compared to other species. And you can't really miss this snake, thanks to its distinctive red, white, and black coloring - so stay away!

32. New York - White-Tailed Deer

White-Tailed Deer

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The return of the white-tailed deer! In the Hudson Valley of New York, these creatures are regularly spotted running around wooded suburbs. However, as in other states, they're also deadly. When scared, they regularly run out into roads unaware, causing a huge number of car crashes.

33. North Carolina - Portuguese Man-O-War

Portuguese Man o War

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North Carolina has a huge coastline, and its beaches are known for being some of the prettiest along the East Coast. However, if you're opting for a beach day, you should keep your eye out for the deadly Portuguese Man-O-War jellyfish, which has been plaguing beaches in the state for years.

34. North Dakota - Bison

North Dakota Bison

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North Dakota is a huge state, home to the stunning Theodore Roosevelt National Park. If you're making a visit to the park, though, watch out for the bison! The state has half a million bison, most of which live in the beautiful surroundings of the national park. But as we know, they can be deadly when provoked.

35. Ohio - Black Legged Ticks

Black Legged Tick

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Ticks may be small, but their bites can be life-threatening. These little critters are parasites that feed off other animals, which means they can carry diseases and spread them to humans. One of the most common is Lyme disease, which ticks in Ohio are known to carry.

36. Oklahoma - Feral Hogs

Feral Hog

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Ever heard of a feral hog? Maybe you don't want to. Though they sound kind of funny, these creatures can actually be horribly deadly. In some cases, they've even been known to charge at hikers! They're so scary that if you get yourself into a standoff with one, you should seek out a tree to climb to get away.

37. Oregon - Northern Pacific Rattlesnake

Northern Pacific Rattlesnake

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Thankfully, the Northern Pacific rattlesnake is Oregon's only venomous snake, but it's still the state's most dangerous animal. You'll know you've discovered one if you start to hear the characteristic rattle of its tail, in which case, it's time to get out of the way, so you don't provoke it.

38. Pennsylvania - Ticks


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Like other US states, ticks are also one of the most deadly animals in Pennsylvania. Many of the ticks in Pennsylvania are known to carry Lyme disease, so you need to stay safe if you're planning on hiking in the state by wearing insect repellant and checking yourself for the critters when you get home.

39. Rhode Island - Asian Giant Hornet

Asian Giant Hornet

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We know that hornets are one of the scariest animals in Kansas, but they're also a terror in Rhode Island. More specifically, you should stay away from the Asian Giant hornet, which has made its home recently in the US and can inject a huge amount of venom in its tiny stinger.

40. South Carolina - Bull Shark

Bull Shark

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Like neighboring North Carolina, South Carolina also has a long coastline, and many families enjoy frequenting the beaches on the weekend. However, you do need to watch out for... sharks. The bull shark is one of the most dangerous of all sharks, as it may attack with no warning out of confusion or fear.

41. South Dakota - South Dakota Puff Adder

Puff Adder

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South Dakota's resident dangerous creature is even named after the state itself. The South Dakota puff adder is a very aggressive creature, meaning it could strike if it feels at all threatened by a human's presence. Their venom can cause organ failure, so definitely stay away if you see one.

42. Tennessee - Elk


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Elk are one of the biggest animals in all of the US, and this also makes them one of the most deadly animals. They have huge antlers, often growing up to four feet long, and can run at incredible speeds of 65 km/h, so you don't want to get in front of one if it's decided you've angered it.

43. Texas - Brain-Eating Amoebas

Brain-Eating Amoeba

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Okay, this creature is hardly an animal, but it definitely deserves its place on this list as it is definitely one of the most dangerous things you can come into contact with in Texas. Amoebas are a type of tiny organism that lives in Texas water, and if they get into your body (generally through your nose), they can start eating through your brain tissue.

44. Utah - Moose

Moose Utah

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Sadly, Utah also has problems with its large moose population. These are most definitely the largest animals to live in the Western State and are especially deadly if you don't know what you're up against. The best way to avoid getting attacked? Don't get up close to them, no matter how much you might want a picture.

45. Vermont - Black Bear

Black Bear Vermont

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It's incredible that we've come to the end of this list and haven't mentioned bears once. Black bears are the most common bear type in the US and are particularly prevalent in Eastern states like Vermont. There are over 6,000 bears in the state, so you should take precautions when hiking to make sure you don't anger one.

46. Virginia - Copperhead Snake

Eastern Copperhead

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Copperheads have developed a reputation as one of the most deadly snakes in America. In Virginia, they are definitely one of the most dangerous animals you'll come across - most snake bites ever recorded in the state have come from this one species of snake alone.

47. Washington - Coyote

Washington Coyote

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There are about 50,000 coyotes in Washington, so the chances of you running into one are actually quite high. These animals are literally trained as hunters and will attack if they feel threatened. So, keep an eye out as you hike - they've even been known to enter human areas like downtown Seattle.

48. West Virginia - Black Widow Spider

Black Widow

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The Black widow spider is quite prevalent across the US, and you best beware in West Virginia, where it's one of the most deadly animals you'll encounter.  It particularly likes lurking in dark hollows outside, so be especially careful when rummaging around your shed.

49. Wisconsin - Deer Tick

Deer Tick

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There have been about 40,000 cases of the incurable Lyme disease in Wisconsin since the 1990s, and most of those cases will have been caused by the humble deer tick. This is most certainly the most dangerous animal in Wisconsin, so it's worth being vigilant as you hike in the state.

50. Wyoming - Grizzly Bear

Grizzly Bear

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We're ending this list with an iconic predator - the grizzly bear. These are even more dangerous than the common black bear, as they're much bigger and more aggressive. Just last year, a hunter in Wyoming was attacked by one. So, keep your eye out, and if you see one - back away slowly.