Deadly encounters and natures beauty

Sometimes while I am here I am caught up in the new sights (wallabies), smells (eucalyptus), and sounds (cockatoos which by the way is a very unpleasant sound). Other times I feel like danger is lurking around every corner. Often when I tell someone I saw a snake on my hike today they will reply, “if it is a Tiger snake, or a Brown snake or a Taipan they will kill you with there venom, or neruotoxin.” Even the insects are huge and deadly looking. Yesterday on my way to take a hike I came across this…

They are among the largest of beetles, reaching more than 150 mm (5.9 in) in length, but are completely harmless to humans because they cannot bite or sting.

This morning after breakfast I was working on my bike when I saw this slithering around in the grass…

Feeds almost exclusively on skinks. (small lizards)

Upon looking it up online I was relieved only a little bit when I read that it is mildly venomous.

Today I road my bike along the ross river around 12k into Townsville, Queensland and went to Reef HQ, the Great Barrier Reef Aquarium. As we rode our bikes along the river there were signs warning to watch out for crocodiles, more peril at every turn. The aquarium helped me forget about all the danger and wowed me with fish, and corals the likes I never knew existed. It was really beautiful. Here are some of my favorite pics from todays trip.

7 Responses to “Deadly encounters and natures beauty”
  1. Lois Howard says:

    So much to pay attention to, be careful,
    I would suggest a long lens camera when taking pictures of the slithering sights. On my knees:)

  2. Mr. Chopp says:

    1. The Box Jellyfish is one of the most extremely lethal animals in the world, and implicitly Australian. Found on the coast alongside the Great Barrier Reef, the box jellyfish possesses an extremely powerful venom. The stings are terribly painful and often fatal.
    2. The taipan is a large, fast and highly venomous snake often found throughout Australia. The taipan has the most toxic venom out of all the species worldwide, has a dark brown color and is often found in sugar fields where it hunts for rats. The snake is usually found in the far north of Australia, in Queensland, the Northern Territory and Western Australia, where the winter is mild. Taipan’s usually stay away from people but once cornered or threatened, they strike several times.
    3. Saltwater Crocodile: The largest living member of the crocodilians and reptiles, the saltwater crocodile can grow up to 18 feet (5.45 meters) in length and is often found in Thailand, Vietnam and Northern Australia. They have been known to take on animals such an adult water buffalo and have often attacked people. It is usually well camouflaged both underwater or on dry land and strikes at an amazing speed. Its most powerful attack – the death roll – consists of grabbing its prey and rolling powerfully until it dies.
    4. Blue Ring Octopus: Another serious threat for those that wish to explore the waters of Australia is the blue-ringed octopus – one of the most toxic sea creatures in the world found off the coast of Australia, New Guinea, Indonesia, and the Philippines. Even though the octopus is only the size of a golf ball, there is no known antidote for its powerful venom. It causes motor paralysis, eventually leading to cardiac arrest. First aid treatment consists of pressure on the wound and mouth-to-mouth breathing that can last for several hours.
    5. Stone Fish: Known as the most venomous fish in the world, the stone fish lives on the bottom of the reefs, camouflaged as a rock. It lives above the Tropic of Capricorn but can be found in the Queensland Great Barrier Reef as well. It’s venom comes from the dorsal area, that is lined with 13 spines, causing shock, paralysis and tissue death depending on the severity of the sting. First aid consists of immobilizing the venom by bandaging the affected area then applying a hot compress. The pain is said to be so excruciating that it lead to amputating the affected limb.

  3. Brice Calco says:

    Mr. Chopp-

    I was just perousing through some of your marvelous photos of nature and this was caught my eye in particular. To me at least, it serves as sort of a contrast to the rest of your photos because looking at it one might assume that simply from its looks this bug might be harmful or dangerous. But then I read your post and it turns out it is harmless to us humans. Nature truly can be deceiving and if we don’t step back and take a look we might just miss out on it!

    • Mr. Chopp says:

      Very true Brice. Many people have Rhinoceros beetles for pets. Just like the Madagascar Hissing cockroaches we have a KAMSC the Rhinoceros beetles can expel air through their spiracles and hiss, but they are harmless. I thought it was really cool!

      • Brice Calco says:

        No way that would be an amazing creature to take care of as a pet back here in Michigan! I would love to get to see some of the insects and other wildlife you have been exploring first-hand, but until then I hope to see more of these wonderful photos coming! And yes they sure do look cool! Keep us updated!

  4. Gauri says:

    This is really cool! It must be really interesting to visit Australia, where the wildlife is a lot more diverse than here in Michigan. Here, you can take a walk without worrying about encountering remotely dangerous animals. I can’t imagine what it would be like to spend every day in an environment that is home to lots of exotic creatures.

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