This Chart Of The 15 Deadliest Animals In The World Will Make Your Skin Crawl In Fear
The numbers are in, and the World Health Organization (WHO) have named the 15 deadliest animals on planet earth. In a blog post (from a year or two ago) on his site GatesNotes.com, Bill Gates (yes, that Bill Gates) went into detail about just how much of a threat the #1 species on this list is and how we as a society need to be doing A LOT more to stop these hundreds of thousands of deaths from happening:
What makes mosquitoes so dangerous? Despite their innocuous-sounding name—Spanish for “little fly”—they carry devastating diseases. The worst is malaria, which kills more than 600,000 people every year; another 200 million cases incapacitate people for days at a time. It threatens half of the world’s population and causes billions of dollars in lost productivity annually. Other mosquito-borne diseases include dengue fever, yellow fever, and encephalitis.
There are more than 2,500 species of mosquito, and mosquitoes are found in every region of the world except Antarctica. During the peak breeding seasons, they outnumber every other animal on Earth, except termites and ants. They were responsible for tens of thousands of deaths during the construction of the Panama Canal. And they affect population patterns on a grand scale: In many malarial zones, the disease drives people inland and away from the coast, where the climate is more welcoming to mosquitoes.
Considering their impact, you might expect mosquitoes to get more attention than they do. Sharks kill fewer than a dozen people every year and in the U.S. they get a week dedicated to them on TV every year. Mosquitoes kill 50,000 times as many people, but if there’s a TV channel that features Mosquito Week, I haven’t heard about it.
On Labor Day last week I woke up at 4am to drive 2.5hrs south, into the heart of Florida’s Everglades National Park, where I went fishing from ~6:50am to 3pm. It was my first time fishing in The Everglades and going into the trip everyone I knew told me I should expect to be devoured alive by mosquitoes (aka ‘black birds’), and it freaked me the fuck out. My buddies had me so rattled I went out and bought a bug spray with 40% Deet which ultimately ended up causing me to get sunburned to all hell because the insect repellant acted as a chemical magnifier in that unforgiving Florida sun and I cooked like a piece of bacon…not to mention I didn’t see A SINGLE GODDAMN MOSQUITO all day because the wind was blowing and the bugs were M.I.A.
Still, the fear of mosquito-borne diseases is something many Americans only see on TV but for me, living in Florida, this is something I’m thinking about almost every day. It’s pretty awesome that someone like Bill Gates is throwing his mighty influence and fortune into combatting the spread of mosquito-borne disease, and if the only contribution I can provide to his cause is this blog post then so be it, I’ll do my tiny part.
For what it’s worth, if any of you out there are wondering just why in the shit I’m blogging something from 2014 I’ll go ahead and be honest with you: I was nearly done with this article before I realized it was from 2014, and I liked it enough to finish it up and share it with you bros because this is news that still needs to be shared.
…For more on the dangers posed by mosquitoes you can click on over to GatesNotes.com!!!…