JUN 30, 2016 02:18 PM PDT

10 Bugs with the Worst Bite

WRITTEN BY: Xuan Pham

Looking at size alone, insects are puny and unassuming - one step with our boot can wipe out nearly a colony of these tiny critters. But for some bugs, size is not equal to the strength of pain they can inflict on fully grown humans. If you're thinking about a common ant bite or a bee sting, think bigger, think more painful.

Unlike black ants, bullet ants inflict a pain so severe that some have described it to a gunshot wound. In one description by Justin Schmidt, an entomologist who came up with the "Schmidt Index Pain," a bite by a bullet ant was described as "Pure, intense, brilliant pain. Like fire-walking over flaming charcoal with a 3-inch rusty nail grinding into your heel."

And no worst-bite list can be complete without the famed black widow spider. Marked by a distinctive red hourglass shape on its abdomen, the female black widow's bite can cause severe muscle spasms and abdominal cramps that can last as long as several weeks!

Watch the video to learn a few more small critters that you should probably never antagonize.
About the Author
  • I am a human geneticist, passionate about telling stories to make science more engaging and approachable. Find more of my writing at the Hopkins BioMedical Odyssey blog and at TheGeneTwist.com.
You May Also Like
NOV 06, 2018
Chemistry & Physics
NOV 06, 2018
The Rise of Thorium Nuclear Reactors
In the 1960s, an experimental reactor was built at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory. The scientists who worked on this project had one ingenious idea: to...
NOV 11, 2018
Videos
NOV 11, 2018
Is Our Everyday Electronic Devices Making Us Sick?
1-5% of people believe their electronic devices are making them experiences symptoms associated with such as nausea, dizziness, and headaches. These indivi...
NOV 13, 2018
Chemistry & Physics
NOV 13, 2018
Viscoelasticity and Non-Newtonian Fluids
One of these is not like the others: honey, water, ketchup, and blood. The answer? Water, because the other three are all non-Newtonian fluid. When Isaac N...
NOV 15, 2018
Cardiology
NOV 15, 2018
An Updated Look At Pacemakers
As pacemakers are now used for a wide range of heart conditions, most of us know someone who has this life-saving medical device. Hundreds of thousands of...
NOV 20, 2018
Videos
NOV 20, 2018
Legal marijuana sales begin today in MA
Massachusetts opened its first dispensaries for legal recreational marijuana sales today. The companies, one called Cultivate Holdings in Leicester and ano...
NOV 27, 2018
Chemistry & Physics
NOV 27, 2018
Unraveling the Secret Behind the Strength of Spider Web
You don't need to watch a Spider-Man movie to notice how tough a spider web can be. Made of fiber-based spider silk, the seemingly fragile structure ca...
Loading Comments...