Shark Week on the Discovery Chanel wrapped up a little over a month ago. This, combined with the release of the summer blockbuster The Meg (a film about a giant, prehistoric shark) has led to an increase in folks interested in sharks. Unfortunately, many of these people may shy away from engaging in sports like scuba diving for fear of being attacked by sharks. While some sharks do pose a threat to humans, attacks are extremely rare and usually aren’t fatal. In fact, there are plenty of other animals in the ocean to be wary of, too. Here are 5 of the most dangerous animals you might (but probably won’t) encounter while scuba diving.
Great White Shark
Let’s get the shark entries out of the way first, shall we? There’s no denying that the Great White can be a frightening animal, especially if you’re diving in open water when you encounter one. Of the reported shark attacks that occur each year, about two-thirds are Great Whites. However, most aren’t fatal and the bottom line is that Great Whites need more protection from us than we do from them.
The Tiger Shark is another of the more dangerous shark species. Like the Great White, the Tiger is a large animal and it’s been known to attack humans, especially at night. If you encounter one while diving, there’s no reason to immediately panic, but you should definitely keep an eye on it.
The Stone Fish is the most poisonous animal in the sea. They aren’t aggressive and won’t attack, but their camouflage is amazing. They blend in so well with the rocks around them that humans occasionally get stung when they come in contact with them. Best to avoid touching anything when diving a coral reef.
Another extremely poisonous animal, the blue-ringed octopus can deliver a very small bite, but it delivers a very potent and potentially deadly poison. When threatened, the animal will display its blue rings. While it’s a beautiful animal, it’s best observed from a distance.
The lionfish is a gorgeous specimen. However, the stingers along its fins can deliver an incredibly painful sting, as well as a potentially deadly dose of poison, especially if you happen to be allergic to the poison.