Beware of these 12 Unusual Poisonous Animals

Regent whistler

The regent whistler, a poisonous bird in Papua New Guinea, has lethal batrachotoxin in its bright yellow feathers, causing muscle cramps and cardiac arrest when consumed or touched.

Rufous-naped bellbird

The rufous-naped bellbird of Papua New Guinea is another poisonous bird with unique coloring that contains lethal batrachotoxin, acquired through a diet of toxic beetles.

Choresine beetles

Pitohuis acquire their poison from toxic beetles of the Choresine genus, known as "nanisani," causing tingling sensations and suggesting a common strategy for poisonous birds.

Garter snake

Garter snakes are resistant to tetrodotoxin from Pacific newts, allowing them to consume them without harm and retain the toxin in their liver for up to a month, making them lethal to predators.


Barracuda flesh contaminated with Gambierdiscus toxicus toxins can cause ciguatera disease, marked by symptoms like diarrhea, cramps, vomiting, heart arrhythmias, and pain, with a 1% mortality rate in reported cases.

Pacific newts

Taricha newts on the Pacific coast of North America have tetrodotoxin that can be fatal, with one recorded case of a person dying after eating a rough-skinned newt.

Greenland shark

Greenland sharks stabilize their proteins with TMAO, which breaks down into TMA, a neurotoxin causing intoxicating effects similar to alcohol; drying their meat over several months neutralizes the toxins.


Consuming meat from common quails during migration season can cause coturnism, a disorder characterized by muscle pain, nausea, and vomiting, possibly caused by the birds feeding on a toxic plant, such as hemlock.

Cinnabar moth

The cinnabar moth found in Europe and Asia has wings decorated with bright-red patches to warn predators that their larvae are unpalatable due to the bitter alkaloid compounds from the ragwort plants they feed on.


Palythoa, a type of cnidarian, produces the potent poison palytoxin that can break down red blood cells, cause heart arrhythmias, and be fatal in small doses, with no antidote available.

Hawksbill sea turtle

The Hawksbill sea turtle's favorite food is sponges, some of which are toxic and can accumulate in their fat stores, making their meat poisonous.

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