The Most Dangerous Animals In The Amazon Rainforest Are Absolute Nightmare Fuel

Everything is bigger in the Amazon Rainforest. The land where dinosaurs used to roam, the rainforest is home to creatures that have evolved into terrifying killing machines — 500-pound snakes, dinosaur-age crocodiles and...giant river otters? Yep. They're all here, and they all want to kill you.

  • Covering 2,100,000 square miles, the Amazon Rainforest is the largest and most biodiverse rainforest in the world.

    Covering 2,100,000 square miles, the Amazon Rainforest is the largest and most biodiverse rainforest in the world.

    The Amazon Rainforest is only a bit smaller than the continental U.S., and it's located mostly in Brazil, Peru and Colombia. Even though rainforests only cover 7 percent of the Earth, they contain about half of the planet's species.


  • The biodiversity of the Amazon Rainforest is incredible.

    The biodiversity of the Amazon Rainforest is incredible.

    There are thousands of different species in the Amazon Rainforest — 40,000 plants, 2,200 fish, 427 mammals, 378 reptiles and countless insect species, many of which have yet to be catalogued...The following species are not only some of the most terrifying creatures in the Amazon, but in the entire world.

  • The Pacu Fish

    The Pacu Fish

    With human-like teeth, the pacu fish is an omnivorous fish with a strong jaw. They don't often attack humans, but there have been reports of pacu biting mens' testicles. So here's a bit of advice for swimming in the Amazon River: don't.

  • The Green Anaconda

    The Green Anaconda

    The largest snake in the world lurks in the Amazon River. At more than 30 feet long and weighing 500 pounds, the green anaconda kills by coiling itself around its prey, dragging it into the water and suffocating it. Then the snake eats the prey whole. 

  • Arapaima


    Complete with armored scales and (sometimes) 400 pounds of flesh, these 10-foot-long fish aren't a creature to mess around with. Need more of a reason? Even the tongue of a arapaima has a set of teeth on it, which indigenous people sometimes use as a scraping tool.

  • Giant River Otters

    Giant River Otters

    The giant river otter might not seem terrifying, but trust us — you don't want to mess with these guys. Packs of them have been known to take down caiman crocodiles and anacondas. Maybe that's why natives call them "river wolves."

  • Electric Eel

    Electric Eel

    One of the most bizarre creatures lurking in the Amazon River is the electric eel, which can grow up to 8 feet long. They're able to shock prey with 650 volts. Fatal attacks on humans are rare, but there have been reports of people being shocked by eels and then drowning.

  • Poison Dart Frog

    Poison Dart Frog

    They may be beautiful, but the poison dart frog's bright color signifies lethal danger — poison. The poison in some is strong enough to kill 20 people. 

  • The black caiman crocodile

    The black caiman crocodile

    There's a reason this croc has survived 85 million years without going extinct like its dinosaur counterparts — it's one of the most successful predators on Earth. And in the Amazon, it's one of the largest. 

  • Goliath Bird-Eater

    Goliath Bird-Eater

    This tarantula can grow up to one foot long and, at least for females, can live up to 30 years. It preys on rodents, lizards, bats and birds. They're not lethal to humans, but a bite from one of these monstrous spiders can leave you nauseated and sick for days.

  • And with all that, people still live here.

    And with all that, people still live here.

    About 30 million people live in the region considered the Amazon Basin, in which the Amazon Rainforest comprises the majority of space. And while most of these people live in major cities, there are still thousands of indigenous people who live in the rainforest. Some of them have had no contact from the outside world at all. 

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