MainMAN From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2005, 2117 posts, RR: 5 Posted (6 years 4 months 3 weeks 4 days 9 hours ago) and read 7445 times:
One of the very best things about living in Britain (to my mind) is that we don't really have creatures here that could harm or even potentially kill you. It is possible to get attacked by seagulls, and our Adders are venomous but most people in the UK don't know this and will never meet one. Other than that, there's nothing. I'm massively phobic of snakes, can't even watch them on the TV without flinching, so it's just as well I was born in Manchester!
I've come face to face with a skunk in Vancouver (my cousin told me to stay still) I've had lectures about not leaving food outside a tent in BC because of bears, I once got stopped from gardening in New South Wales because I hadn't realised I needed protection from funnel-web spiders, I've ironed the life out of pairs of socks in Zimbabwe in case putse flies had laid eggs in them etc.
My question is this, to all you residents of Queensland, Texas, California, Tennessee, South Africa........I realise that if you live in an urban area, you're less likely to come across anything dangerous, and that meeting with an alligator is far from a daily occurance for a resident of Miami, but does anyone have any interesting stories about what precautions you take, or what's happened when you have met something like this?
Myt332 From United Kingdom, joined Sep 2003, 9114 posts, RR: 70
Reply 1, posted (6 years 4 months 3 weeks 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 7433 times:
Yea, living in Manchester you just don't think about deadly creepy crawlies. I was out playing golf in northern Las Vegas with a friend the other week and because I suck royally I'd smacked my ball in to the scrub and obviously being a Northerner, I wanted it back because hey, I'd paid for that! So I went off in to the long grass rummaging around for my ball and I heard a shout saying to watch out for the snakes. I laughed it off in a 'yea yea' kind of way and then when he shouted back that he was serious, well, lets say you've never seen a guy in flip flops run that fast before!
I'm not quite sure why I didn't think about snakes with being in the desert but there you go!
Beaucaire From Syria, joined Sep 2003, 5252 posts, RR: 24
Reply 2, posted (6 years 4 months 3 weeks 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 7406 times:
I'm really into snakes -interest wise that is- and have to tell you that the continent with the most incredible collection of poisenous snake families- Australia- there have only be two fatal bites being reported within the last year..
The most dangerous animals in Down Under - fatality wise-are honey bees,since quite some people are sensitive to bee-stings..
So yes there are quite some deadly creatures out there,but they are very afraid from the average human and will rather hide once they sense your steps (they can't hear you arriving..)
The danger comming from snakes is relatively big in Sri Lanka and India,where many farmers walk without shoes in areas inhabited by venomous snakes.Biggest threat there is the Saw-scaled viper and Russell's viper.Other areas with some victimes is Brazil with
bites from the Bothrops genus (jararacas, lanceheads) account for about 75% of the snakebite accidents in the country.
But compared to deadly household accidents ,the dangers arising from those animals is relatively small and usually over-estimated in scale.
BristolFlyer From United Kingdom, joined May 2004, 2314 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (6 years 4 months 3 weeks 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 7403 times:
I live in the city in Phoenix, AZ. The main nasties in Phoenix are scorpions and rattlesnakes, however I have never seen any at my place thankfully. They tend to avoid human contact and seeing as my house has been here about 60 yrs that's probably enough time for them to have left. When out in the desert I have seen scorpions, snakes, coyotes and a gila monster. There are also mountain lions (aka cougars) which can be aggressive.
We have a few geckos in the house from time tot time, but they eat bugs so we ignore them.
Baroque From Australia, joined Apr 2006, 15380 posts, RR: 59
Reply 4, posted (6 years 4 months 3 weeks 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 7398 times:
Quoting Beaucaire (Reply 2): The most dangerous animals in Down Under - fatality wise-are honey bees,since quite some people are sensitive to bee-stings..
Actually the most dangerous animal in Aus is the horse. However, most horses are fairly easy to see compared with snakes, and it is the unexpected snakey that gives me the willies.
Even with snakes around, we still have to be more careful of the funnel web spiders. We also have the red back (a rel of the Black Widow) is around too but compared with a funnel web, the reb back is a bit of a joke, just as long as it is not under the toilet seat - which IS a favourite spot for them in outdoor dunnies.
Bitten in the bum by a spider might just cause you to exceed your sprint speed in flip flops Myt332 even with your pants down!
So far the only beastie that has bitten me was an eel, that got my finger when I was collecting shells from a rock pool many moons ago.
When i first went to australia as a kid, i had all these nightmares about spiders and snakes and other nasty beasties that would take your head off if you looked at them funny.
Was over there for 4 weeks, and didn't really see anything (not that i went looking for it), apart from behind glass at Zoo's etc.
Now i go back to Australia (Tasmania) every other year for 4/5 weeks, and i still know the dangers, but less paranoid about it. As long as you take precautions, like banging out your shoes if you left them outside over night and checking under the dunnie seat in the outside thunderbox.
The other point is that Australia has a very good Anti-Venom programme, so if you do get bit by something with more legs than yourself, then the chances of survival are very very high.
Although i was told the other day, that the black widow anti-venom can only be administered once??
Children should only be allowed on aircraft if 1. Muzzled and heavily sedated 2. Go as freight
Sovietjet From Bulgaria, joined Mar 2003, 2655 posts, RR: 17
Reply 7, posted (6 years 4 months 3 weeks 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 7326 times:
I have had some encounters in my life but nothing serious. I've seen snakes in the woods 2-3 times but they were harmless, in fact I played with them with a stick.
At my current home I have 3 usual encounters which repeat on a regular basis depending on season.
These guys love to hide in my garage and sometimes in the basement. They are extremely quick and always run away when I approach though.
2) Skunks. Skunks live in my area and every once in a while surprise the hell out of me as I'm walking to my front door. There's a bush right before my door, and as I come around it suddenly I'm face to face with the skunk, I don't know how I haven't been sprayed yet because it's a sudden encounter within 3 feet of the creature. They always raise the tail but then they run away if I stay still.
3) In my room there's a pretty decent spider. I have a "deal" with him. If I don't see him, he doesn't see me. He "understands", so as soon as I turn on the light, he goes back to his spot, which I know where it is. Kinda weird, but I don't really mind it, plus he probably eats number 1.
Dazed767 From United States of America, joined May 1999, 5509 posts, RR: 51
Reply 8, posted (6 years 4 months 3 weeks 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 7309 times:
Brown Widow spider. Run into these every night at work (find them around my house too from time to time). It's so bad at work, I've counted about 3 dozen (they were spaced out about every foot or 2. It's to the point where I know where they are now, I just keep an eye out for them. I really really hate spiders too.
Superfly From Thailand, joined May 2000, 40262 posts, RR: 74
Reply 9, posted (6 years 4 months 3 weeks 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 7304 times:
Quoting MainMAN (Thread starter): I'm massively phobic of snakes, can't even watch them on the TV without flinching,
Same here. I am equally afraid of garter snakes as I am rattlesnakes. It's not the venom that bothers me as I am not afraid of spiders which are also venomous.
Yet I enjoy visiting places that just so happen to have lots of them. I almost ran over a snake riding a rented motorcycle in eastern Thailand about 2 hours outside of Pattaya. It scared the hell out of me as I know their snakes are very poisonous and aggressive.
Tons of skunks as well as raccoons and even possums in my neighborhood and I live in city proper San Francisco. Just one block form my house, there is a skunk-crossing sign warning joggers and motorist. I ran over a skunk 3 years ago and my car smalled like skunk for 2 months.
Af773atmsp From United States of America, joined Aug 2006, 2735 posts, RR: 1
Reply 10, posted (6 years 4 months 3 weeks 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 7299 times:
The only things in my neighborhood that you don't really want to run into is a woodchuck. There are also garter snakes, frogs, and toads. The garter snakes around Minneapolis never bite. When I go the dog park (the one at MSP and near my house) I try to find some. At my uncle's cabin the garter snakes bite you if you catch one. I even saw a garter snake eating frog and I got a rake and hit the snake to try to save the frog. I like snakes and frogs. I don't like bees and wasps. Since I got sting in the ear by a wasp when I was three or four years old I've been terrified of them.
When I was around ten years old my dad and I went to the store to get some stuff and I stayed in the car with the windows open. The most ugly looking wasp flew into the car staring me in the face. I got really nervous and almost screamed. I looked around to see if anybody was around and I jumped out of the car as fast as I could and thankfully the wasp flew away.
A332 From Canada, joined Feb 2005, 1644 posts, RR: 2
Reply 12, posted (6 years 4 months 3 weeks 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 7296 times:
I am absolutely petrified of snakes. Growing up in Northern BC, we only had the occassional garter snakes around here and there, but my encounters were very rare.
However, when I was in Miami back in the spring of 2005, I nearly stepped on one that was crawling across the sidewalk, some rather large thing... all I remember is it was very dark colored and moving fast and I was likely moving 100x as quickly the opposite direction.
Returning to my hotel on South Beach, we went out for a walk and a guy came parading down the sidewalk with a huge albino boa (or whatever they're called) and I don't know if it was my expression, but he lunged at me with the snake saying "it's okay, it won't hurt you"...
Yeah... I bolted right out on to Collins Ave and nearly got run over in the process... I hid behind my buddy the rest of the way back to the hotel, where I had to chill for the evening.
Funny... we turn on the light in the hotel room and there was a huge cockroach on the wall (a window was left open)... my buddy freaked out... I scoffed at him as I grabbed it with some toilet paper and flushed it away. Snakes are one thing... but a cockroach? Please!
Because of its low volume, CSL Red Back Spider Antivenom has a very low incidence of adverse reactions and this has allowed a lowering of the threshold for using it. Any patient with symptoms consistent with significant envenoming by a red back spider, such as local then generalised pain, sweating, ± hypertension, should be considered for a trial of the antivenom, even if no spider was seen. Give 1 vial of CSL Red Back Spider Antivenom IM. If there is a complete or partial resolution of symptoms, the patient's distress has been alleviated and the diagnosis confirmed. If the initial response to antivenom is incomplete or a relapse occurs, give a further vial of antivenom. Occasionally it is necessary to give a third vial, but only rarely more than this, except if treatment has been delayed more than 24 hours, when higher doses are frequently required.
Red back spider bite is one of the few cases where antivenom may be effective days after the bite. If the symptoms fit red back spider bite, it is quite acceptable to try a dose of antivenom a week, or more, after the original bite occurred. Multiple doses may be required.
If, after 3 ampoules of antivenom, either early or late, there has been no improvement at all in symptoms, then reconsider the diagnosis. Patients in whom antivenom treatment has been delayed more than 24 hours occasionally require higher doses of antivenom, but it is often adviseable to extend the time between doses and consider the IV route. CSL Red Back Spider Antivenom has been given to pregnant women on a number of occasions, without detriment to the mother or foetus, with a normal infant delivered at term being the outcome.
Looks a bit as if they can fill you full of it - a number of times should you insist on being bitten by a flock of red backs!!
Quoting Superfly (Reply 9): I almost ran over a snake riding a rented motorcycle in eastern Thailand about 2 hours outside of Pattaya.
Wow, I wonder if Beaucaire has a picture of a king cobra riding a rented motorcycle!
57AZ From United States of America, joined Nov 2004, 2582 posts, RR: 2
Reply 16, posted (6 years 4 months 3 weeks 3 days 14 hours ago) and read 7238 times:
Out here the rattlesnakes can be a bit of a danger if you're in a remote area. Most of the time, they'll manage to avoid humans. If you're in a remote area, a firearm is a nice bit of insurance to have with you. Personally, I'd worry about coyotes or cougars more than snakes though.
"When a man runs on railroads over half of his lifetime he is fit for nothing else-and at times he don't know that."
MainMAN From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2005, 2117 posts, RR: 5
Reply 18, posted (6 years 4 months 3 weeks 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 7217 times:
Cheers for all the replies guys, really entertaining! It sounds to me like Florida is the place with the most encounters.
Quoting Myt332 (Reply 1): I'd smacked my ball in to the scrub and obviously being a Northerner, I wanted it back because hey, I'd paid for that!
And if you were a Yorkshireman, you would have made sure you'd got it back!
Quoting Baroque (Reply 4): We also have the red back (a rel of the Black Widow) is around too but compared with a funnel web
One day I took myself off for a walk through the Dandenong Ranges in VIC, in a pair of shorts and hiking boots, which is probably a stupid pommy thing to do. I saw a red back, and got latched onto by loads of small leeches.
Quoting Dazed767 (Reply 8): Brown Widow spider. Run into these every night at work (find them around my house too from time to time). It's so bad at work, I've counted about 3 dozen (they were spaced out about every foot or 2. It's to the point where I know where they are now, I just keep an eye out for them. I really really hate spiders too.
That sounds like real hard work!
Quoting Superfly (Reply 9): I live in city proper San Francisco. Just one block form my house, there is a skunk-crossing sign warning joggers and motorist. I ran over a skunk 3 years ago and my car smalled like skunk for 2 months.
Did it spray right into the aircon system? Worst luck
Quoting Af773atmsp (Reply 10): The most ugly looking wasp flew into the car staring me in the face. I got really nervous and almost screamed. I looked around to see if anybody was around and I jumped out of the car as fast as I could and thankfully the wasp flew away.
If it's any consolation, my brother seems to scream like a b*tch every time he meets a wasp. Last time whilst eating out, I had to abandon him because he very nearly turned the restaurant table over.....very embarrassing.
Quoting A332 (Reply 12): However, when I was in Miami back in the spring of 2005, I nearly stepped on one that was crawling across the sidewalk, some rather large thing... all I remember is it was very dark colored and moving fast and I was likely moving 100x as quickly the opposite direction.
Yeh, it's amazing just how fast you can run when you really, really need to.
Ktrick45 From United States of America, joined Mar 2008, 69 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (6 years 4 months 3 weeks 3 days 7 hours ago) and read 7178 times:
In the Pittsburgh suburbs, the nastiest critters you're likely to encounter are yellowjackets and sac spiders, and they're painful and annoying, but not deadly. Well, yellowjackets can be if you're sensitive the their venom, particularly if they attack en masse, which they're prone to do. My sister once accidentally stepped on a hive entrance and ended up with 120 stings. After an emergency room visit and some Benadryl, she was OK.
Once you get out into the woods, though, you can run into copperheads and timber rattlesnakes. When I was in boy scouts we were visiting the logging operation at Rolling Rock, the Mellon estate near Latrobe, for the Forestry badge. We were talking about the trees they were harvesting and whatnot, and while we were walking back to the Jeep to move to the next site, one of the guys said to the counselor,
"Hey Rick, check out the black snake."
Rick: "Black snake, hell! That's a timber rattler."
Nearby logger: "Hey guys! Rattlesnake!"
The loggers then proceeded to pummel the four-foot-long snake with rocks and tree limbs until it appeared to be dead. Our counselor carefully picked it up with a long tree limb and put it in a box that was in the back of the Jeep.
We started down the road, and he said,
"That snake's not dead. I couldn't let them kill it."
A few minutes later, the desultory buzzing that had been coming from the snake since we "rescued" it turned into a vigorous angry rattle, followed by a loud thumping noise as the snake struck at the box lid. I was sitting in the back seat of the Jeep.
Me: "Rick, the snake is seriously pissed off."
Rick: "He can't hit you from there."
Me: "Rick, get this snake out of here."
Rick: "We need to get further away from the loggers. They'll kill it."
Me: "OK, how about you put the box right up next to you?"
We drove about a mile, with the snake rattling and striking at random inside the box the whole time. We stopped, got two long branches, and flipped the box out of the Jeep. The snake crawled out, rattling furiously and striking at... not sure really. The beating must have damaged its heat sensing organs. We got back in the Jeep and got out of there. That's about as close to an angry rattlesnake I hope I never get again.
Levent From France, joined Sep 2004, 1718 posts, RR: 4
Reply 20, posted (6 years 4 months 3 weeks 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 7155 times:
Quoting Superfly (Reply 9): I almost ran over a snake riding a rented motorcycle in eastern Thailand about 2 hours outside of Pattaya
I did actually run over one in the same area. Only afterwards I realised that the curly, long, green thing was indeed a snake. I stopped and jumped off to check that it hadn't wrapped itself onto the bike...
Some expat friends living there had to deal with cobras in their garden several times. Usually they got a local to come and catch it, it probably ended up in the cooking pot later in the evening...
Sovietjet From Bulgaria, joined Mar 2003, 2655 posts, RR: 17
Reply 21, posted (6 years 4 months 3 weeks 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 7125 times:
Quoting Ktrick45 (Reply 19): In the Pittsburgh suburbs, the nastiest critters you're likely to encounter are yellowjackets and sac spiders
Speaking of wasps...at my apartment in Sofia on the balcony I have a toolshed which I don't use. Every summer I go back and there's a good size wasp hive in one of the drawers. The first year I noticed it me and some friends were drinking and decided to take it out at that exact moment. Poor judgement but alcohol can do funny things. It was hot, half of us didn't have shirts on and our "armament" was deodorant and lighters which put together make a flame torch. Imagine 4 drunk guys torching a hive at night while a hundred angry wasps tried to get at us. There was no escape, the girls that were there promptly closed the balcony door because they were scared of the wasps. Needless to say it was a rough battle, we got a dozen or so stings but the hive was destroyed!
It was back there next summer.... . Ever since it has become sort of a tradition to take it out every summer. They keep coming back and rebuilding. Except now we wear long sleeves and do it during the day before drinking
Superfly From Thailand, joined May 2000, 40262 posts, RR: 74
Reply 22, posted (6 years 4 months 3 weeks 2 days 22 hours ago) and read 7102 times:
Quoting MainMAN (Reply 18): Did it spray right into the aircon system? Worst luck
Quoting Levent (Reply 20): Some expat friends living there had to deal with cobras in their garden several times. Usually they got a local to come and catch it, it probably ended up in the cooking pot later in the evening...
If I were to ever move to Thailand, it would have to be downtown Bangkok in a high-rise condo. Just so I don't ever have to worry about these snakes out in the countryside. I love visiting the countryside of Thailand but the thought of having poisonous snakes slithering around scares the hell out of me.
Well, living in urban Los Angeles, you don't tend to run into too many dangerous critters.
However, we have a truck trailer outside in back of work, that has our raw materials that we use in the machine shop. A few months ago, I went back there to get some sheetmetal or something. Unlocked the padlock, opened the door, and got a hell of a surprise as I saw a skunk immediately run away and hide under the piles of stuff in the back of the trailer. Lucky it didn't spray me!
That skunk resided in the trailer for probably a month or so. During that time, we generally had someone come out and watch the skunk from the door, to make sure it wasn't about to spray us, when we need to get stuff out of the trailer. Eventually, it moved on - haven't seen it in a few months now.
There are plenty of rattlesnakes up in the hills and desert that surround LA as well. I go hiking now and then, and I haven't seen one yet, but it's only a matter of time - friends of mine have run into them.
We have black widow spiders out here too, but I haven't run across one of those anyplace I've lived yet.
Amusingly enough, the critters that freak me out the most are completely harmless. Cockroaches - I fucking hate them with a passion. Don't know why, but I just can't stand them. Can't stand to see them, can't stand to know that they're lurking in dark corners and drains and whatnot, can't stand knowing that I may step on one whilst walking on the sidewalk at night. But oh well, it's a fact of life.
Growing up in suburban Boston, there are plenty of skunks around there. I used to lifeguard at a swim and tennis club behind my house, and we had a path through about 200 feet of woods between our backyard and the club. One night, I was walking home after closing up, and I didn't have a flashlight with me (not normally a problem - walked that path so much in my life, I could do it with my eyes closed). But about halfway down, a skunk walked out on the path ahead of me - literally 5 feet in front of me. I don't know what it was thinking, exactly, but I just froze, and waited a minute or two before I continued to my house. I only could see it due to the bright white stripe on its back.
There are also plenty of mosquitos and bees in the Boston area. I've stepped on a couple bees while walking around the swimming pool at the aforementioned club. That's never any fun, but I'm not allergic, so it's just a few minutes of pain, and having to pull a stinger out of your foot. Horseflies are also perhaps more of a pain than bees. It's weird - when I'd be swimming, every now and then a horsefly would decide it wanted to bite me. I'd dive underwater for 20 seconds or something, but it would STILL be there when I surfaced! Those things were persistent.
One thing I very much like about LA - I never run into mosquitos or very many other flying insects. At least, not ones that seem to want to attack me.
Do all philosophers have an "s" in them?
: Sorry for the 2nd post, but for some reason, it's not letting me edit my previous post.... I used to do the same thing at my parents' house in Boston.
: Creepy crawlies never bugged me (pun intended). I've had spiders, crickets, cockroaches and pretty much everything else crawl across my face while sle
: Jay- the best way to fight your fears is to get used to the animals in question and learn about their lives,habits and usefulness... There are terrifi
: I'd rather have a cobra living beneath the house than rats. Years ago, when in the Philippines with my first wife, we stayed a few nights with some i
: Well aware of that. All snakes freak me out, including the non-venomous ones. YUCK!!!!!!!!!!!!