The 8 most dangerous animals in France

The Asian hornet

Among the approximately 400 invasive species recorded in France is the Asian hornet (Vespa velutina nigrithorax). These about 2 cm insects are a threat to honey bees. When they discover a hive, they attack the occupants, decapitating them with their jaws, taking only the chest, which is rich in protein.

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But its sting is also particularly painful for humans. Many people are bitten every year and some even die from it.

The black Widow

Her name is enough to make arachnophobes shiver: the black widow of Europe. Also known as “Malmignatte” or “Black Widow of the Mediterranean”, this small black spider is recognizable by its 13 red dots on its abdomen. It is found in France throughout Corsica, in the south and along the Atlantic coast.

It owes its sinister name to the fact that females, which measure 1.5 cm on average, eat smaller males after mating. Add to this the fact that its Australian and American cousins ​​are extremely dangerous, their bites can be fatal.

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The European black widow spider is less dangerous. While its sting is not fatal, it can still cause serious health problems if left untreated.

The Viper

The main species found in France are the asp viper, the Péliade viper, the Orsini viper and the Pyrenean viper (from Seoane). The bite of this snake, although rarely fatal (about one death per year), must necessarily lead the attacked person to go to the hospital, even if the viper has not expelled poison (then we speak of “white bite”). An injection of antivenom can be done.

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The check mark

The tick is gaining ground. While the risk of being bitten was greater in forests, wooded and humid areas and high grasslands, now the risk is also present in public and private gardens.

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Problem, the mite attacks both animals and humans and can carry diseases. The best known is Lyme disease. 15% of ticks carry the bacteria responsible for this disease.

To avoid getting bitten, there are some simple tips to apply: wear light, covering clothing, closed shoes, do not step into tall grass, sit on a blanket rather than directly in the grass, and regularly examine their clothing.

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The mosquito

He is the nightmare of our summers: the mosquito! The “traditional” mosquito buzzes in our ears at night, when the tiger mosquito is silent and daytime. And pay attention to him. In addition to giving you itchy pimples, the tiger mosquito (Aedes albopictus) is particularly dangerous because it can carry viruses such as chikungunya, Zika or dengue fever.

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long life

If the lively large lives in deep water, this is not the case with the lively small (Echiichthys vipera). This fish, which measures from 10 to 18 cm, has taken up residence along our coasts, in the sand, very close to the shore. The problem is that the little one has a formidable weapon: poisonous spines on the dorsal fin. Woe to the swimmer who would have the misfortune to step on it.

Although it is not usually fatal, its sting is extremely painful and must be treated. Poison-related effects include nausea, severe headache, palpitations, fever, and dizziness.

Since the poison is thermolabile, it is necessary to quickly apply heat to the affected area.

⋙ The most dangerous marine animals

The shark

While it is rare to see sharks in metropolitan France, they are still numerous in the overseas territories. It is thus possible to meet different species in the West Indies: the mako, the tiger shark and the bulldog shark. Attacks are rare.

On the other hand, they are more frequent on the island of Reunion. There are five shark species thought to be dangerous to humans, most likely to encounter a bulldog shark or tiger shark, which evolve near the coast. Further out there will be the mako shark, oceanic whitetip shark and great white shark, which prefer deeper or more temperate waters. Most of the attacks involve surfers.


Coming from the same family of millipedes and lice, the millipede is an arthropod, more precisely a millipede, called in Guadeloupe the “beast of a thousand feet”. It is found in both the West Indies and southern metropolitan France.

It has two fangs under its head and poison glands just below its jaws to better bite the insects it devours. Best not to bother him because the centipede attacks when it feels in danger. The consequences can be severe, depending on the bitten area, or if the “victim” is a child. The bite is very painful and can cause swelling.

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