When Mother Nature Needs An ExorcistBy Jhoana C
Mother Nature is full of lovely creatures and holds infinite wonders. Just look at cute baby elephants, emperor penguins, amusing alpacas, and slow loris. They just want to make you treat them good and do your part in ensuring that they survive, so future generations get to witness them and enjoy them as much as we do. However, Mother Nature also has a dark side and is also the abode of unexplainable, weird, and downright scary creatures. It’s like there’s an ensemble cast of horror heavy-hitters out there if we just look long enough in dark crevices and the depths of the sea. There are bizarre plants that devour animals, fish with faces, critters with thousands of legs, and fungus that turn you into a zombie. Talented writers can write scary movies, but nothing is more frightening than Mother Nature herself.
Whales sleeping vertically
Marine mammals unsurprisingly spend their entire lives in the water because they can’t survive on land. Some of the biggest marine mammals we know are whales, and most of us only get up close and personal with these fascinating creatures when we are in the aquarium.
Marine biologists are lucky to be able to interact with them closely but have you ever wondered how these animals sleep? They can rest quietly in the water, whether in a horizontal or vertical position. This picture of whales sleeping vertically is eerie and enthralling. We’re just afraid for the diver should the whales wake up and see him.
Checking on the noise on the roof and seeing this
People who live in apartments don’t come across a lot of animals. Most of their problems are limited to the occasional insect or creepy-crawly, but it’s another story if you live in the suburbs or the country. You get pleasant or, in this case, horrifying surprises from time to time.
This homeowner decided to investigate what had been causing the noise on her roof early in the morning, and when she checked, she nearly had a heart attack when the sight of a big snake coiled around a bird greeted her. We’d say call animal control right away.
Frightening cabbage field
This sight is straight out of a scary alien flick. It’s like numerous alien babies are gonna pop out from the eggs anytime, and their big alien mother is lurking somewhere, ready to pounce on intruders. But this isn’t a movie set of a horrifying movie; it’s a cabbage field in Japan.
We’re wondering where Sigourney Weaver is with her flame thrower when we need her. We need someone to protect us from all the creepy crawlies that might start coming out from the wilted cabbages anytime now. Seriously though, what happened to the cabbages?
We’re confused if these are avocado frogs or frog avocados
Everyone loves avocados because, without them, there’s no guacamole. But what if the avocados had four legs and could hop on the table? Joking aside, these frogs look like live avocados. They’re called Vietnamese mossy frog, commonly found in China, Vietnam, and Laos.
The mossy frog boasts of an ability that its cousins don’t have. It can throw its voice and make it sound as if it’s calling from then feet away than where it is. This is a useful ability when it comes to throwing predators off its path.
The zombie-making fungus
For people suffering from arachnophobia, the sight of a tarantula is enough to send them to the brink of madness. If you think that the tarantula looks scary, you should see a tarantula infected with cordycipitaceae. It’s weird and downright wicked and disgusting.
Cordycipitaceae is a family of parasitic fungi that affect insects and turns them into zombies. The deadly fungus can take out an entire species. The spores land on the insect and take root in its muscles, and that’s when it starts controlling the insect, making it move to a location that’s perfect for the fungi to reproduce. We know what you’re thinking, and you don’t need to be scared; the fungus can’t turn humans into zombies.
Is that a centipede in your pants or are you just happy to see me?
You wake up late in the morning, so you hurriedly clean yourself, get dressed, grab your breakfast, and drive your way to the office. Sounds like you on most days and seems harmless, right? Not when you’re this man. He discovered that he had a centipede in the fly of his jeans.
He discovered the centipede lodged in there, happy and warm, while he was still wearing his pants. The horror of it all! We’d rather go naked than continue wearing the pants. It’s better to put some gasoline on it and set it ablaze. We’re not going anywhere near that thing.
A frog on steroids
Frogs have an important role to play in the ecosystem. Just like the canary, frogs are an indicator species because they measure the health of the environment. They have sensitive skin and pores, which make them extra sensitive to both the health of land and water.
The giant frog you see in the photo is most likely the goliath bullfrog. Large ones can weigh as much as 3 kilos and grow to a length of 10 inches. However, they are dwindling in numbers as they are captured for human consumption and from a frog-killing fungus that’s widespread.
Time to burn the house down
Spheksophobia. Don’t recognize the word? Few people do, and it is defined as the fear of wasps. People who suffer from this phobia experience extreme panic at the sight of wasps, even just a picture of wasps. This photo right here can induce spheksophobia where none is present.
This homeowner started hearing noises behind the wall and, upon investigation, found this humungous wasp nest. We’re quite sure this is not the home of bees. Time to burn the house down, if you ask us. Who’d want to live in a house with these wasps burrowing in the walls?
The Kung-fu mantis
The praying mantis devours flies, crickets, grasshoppers, and other insects for nutrition. However, it isn’t just a predator; it’s also prey to larger insects and animals such as snakes and spiders. Its daytime hours are spent on plants waiting for other insects to add to its menu.
We imagine that the praying mantis in the photo was trying to ward off predators when it was taken. Just look at the stance and the menacing arms, raised and poised for attack. Ok, that’s not true, and we must have been watching too many martial arts movies.
They’re watching you
Next time you feel as if someone or something is watching you, look around because it might be true. There might be a group of frogs right behind you, plotting and conniving to inflict harm or abduct you and take you to their giant master frog.
This photo might not look frightening or menacing, but it is creepy. It’s like the frogs are watching your every move and judging your every action. It’s as if they called a meeting and got all frogs to turn up so they can collectively criticize you.
Walking on spiderwebs
Strong, intricate, and rapidly-built, spiderwebs, just like their builders and owners, are fascinating. Spiders have a sense of design, and some actively decorate their webs. The size of their webs is also carefully set. We can’t say that about other animals or insects.
Many spiders also go about replacing their webs daily. The larger the webs are, the more hours the spiders spend weaving, but they are also rewarded with large catches. This spider seems to have woven a very thick web. We wonder how long it took to finish.
Now I know where the shrimp went
Have you ever gone to the kitchen knowing you had leftover food only not to be able to find it? Some people might have house pets to blame for missing food, but what if you live all alone? Who might have stolen the food?
The ants might be masterminding stealing your food. Don’t believe us? Take a look at this photo taken by a homeowner who caught the perpetrators in the act. They’re busy transporting the stolen shrimp to their queen. You gotta admire their teamwork, though.
This tree is not friendly at all
Didn’t you just love climbing trees when you were younger? We surely did, and it’s good to know that climbing trees build creativity. It might not seem like an activity designed for cognitive work, but it helps develop spatial reasoning and build emotional intelligence.
However, if the tree in the photo is the only one available for climbing, we’ll just forget about it. That is the sandbox tree, one of the most dangerous plants in the world. This deadly but intriguing tree has exploding seeds that look like little pumpkins.
These nasty ticks
One of a dog owner’s most important responsibilities is to ensure that his beloved canine does not suffer from ticks. Ticks are a nightmare because they transmit bacteria and microbes when they bite, not to mention they suck the blood from your beloved pets.
How do you check for ticks? Run your hands on your dog’s body and feel for any bumps and lumps. They have a tendency to attach themselves to your dog’s neck, feet, ear, and head. You might also want to check your pooch’s mouth to ensure there are no ticks in there.
Spidey mom and her babies
Here we go again with spiders! They just make your hairs stand on end. It is estimated that about 6% of the global population have arachnophobia. The intense fear of spiders is often the result of a negative experience.
Spiders are often included in horror films because they frighten people. You might think that this photo was taken from a horror movie, but it’s not. This is what a person saw in his home. We’re gonna be honest, if you saw this inside our house, we’re calling pest control, and we’re never going back inside until it’s gone.
There are ears everywhere
This photo is just disturbing on so many levels. This is what nightmares are made of. What if you were walking in the forest saying bad things about a person and this ear heard you? What will it think of you? Seriously this mushroom that looks like an ear is called a wood ear mushroom. Duh!
Ranging from small to medium in size, the wood ear mushroom is surprisingly edible. It has a crunchy and jelly texture and is often included in many Chinese recipes, such as Hot and Sour soup and Suan La Tang. It’s also included in stir-fry dishes and salads.
Is that a spider or a frog or both?
Adult frogs catch prey with their long and sticky tongues, and some of their favorite food are worms, slugs, snails, and sometimes spiders. On the other hand, young tadpoles like to feed on algae before they grow up and become carnivorous.
It looks like this frog has a spider in its mouth, but I guess the greater concern is what happened to the frog? It looks like it died and has been mummified. Did it choke on the spider? The spider must have put up a good fight. If he’s going down, the frog’s going down with him.
No way I’m going in there
This is another picture that’s the stuff of nightmares. What would you do if you were told that’s gonna be your room for tonight? Would you say no thank you and gladly pay for a hotel, or would you grin and bear it? What’s the probability of the little critters going inside when you open the door? We think the chance is too great and are looking for the nearest motel as we speak.
We’d say we won’t be able to sleep in that room. Saying that they have a little spider problem is an understatement because that’s already an infestation. We’d be surprised if anyone can stay in their house if it looked like that.
This is Cthulhu
If you’re a fan of H.P. Lovecraft, you must have already heard of one of his most iconic creations, Cthulhu. The mythic cosmic entity has great power and lies in great slumber beneath the Pacific Ocean in the city of R’lyeh.
Don’t you think this looks a lot like a little Cthulhu? Is it going to rise from the ocean and take over the world? We sure hope it doesn’t. Fortunately, this is just an octopus that suffered from a rare mutation that caused its tentacles to branch out.
No way squid have teeth
Most of us believed when we were growing up that squid had no teeth. Perhaps even some adults think that squid has no teeth. We hate to disappoint you, but they do. Squid tentacles have hundreds of suction cups, and each suction cup has a ring of sharp teeth.
Look at the photo if you don’t believe us. It’s curious, though, that some suction cups don’t have teeth while others have prominent razors. Looks alien, if you ask us. It would be terrifying to be on the other and of those suction cups.
The hungry wasp
Wasps have a bad reputation. They are feared and misunderstood because although they can be aggressive, they play an important role in the ecosystem. Wasps are great at pest control, and they help keep the balance in the natural world.
Without wasps, the world will be easily overrun by insects and spiders. In the UK alone, wasps capture an estimated 14 million kilos of prey, such as greenflies, caterpillars, insects, and other wasps. Just look at this photo of a wasp in action, doing what it does best.
Now that’s one scary snail
If you don’t see snails during winter, don’t worry. They’re probably just hibernating somewhere and saving their energy so they can emerge in spring. Most snails only reach a length of about 3 inches, and you seldom see large common snails.
However, the Giant African land snails are different because they often reach an average size of 8 inches. They are often kept as exotic pets, but they are also considered one of the most invasive pests in the world. They are also thought to carry a parasite that causes meningitis. So, think again if you want to get one.
Ok, time to buy a new home
One thing that we love about bees is that they provide honey, but we’ve often been curious about where they usually build their hives. Wild honeybees often make hives in rock crevices and hollow trees. How do they make the hives? By chewing wax and then bonding them into the cells of the honeycomb.
However, there are rare occasions when bees build hives in a house’s walls, like what this homeowner discovered. We hope that she didn’t kill the bees as their numbers are rapidly declining. In cases like this, it’s helpful to call bee farmers because they are more than willing to adopt the bees.
The spaghetti tree
Wildfires have ravaged areas all over the world, such as California, Australia, and the Amazon. Not only do fires harm plant life, but they also harm the animals that live in the forest. Plants are at a disadvantage compared to animals because they can’t move, they can’t run, and they can’t escape.
The picture above is of a tree that was burned but what got people interested is not the importance of ensuring that fires are prevented but the inside of the tree that looked like burnt spaghetti. It’s a curious thing indeed.
Fish from outer space
Okay, we’re exaggerating this fish is not from outer space. It’s from the depths of the ocean, and it’s called the wolf eel. Found in the North Pacific, it often competes with the octopus for den space. Contrary to its name, it’s not an eel but a long and skinny fish.
It has 200 spinal vertebrae and can grow to a length of eight feet long. The female eel can lay up to 10,000 eggs in a den that take around 16 weeks to mature. The wolf eel is sometimes made pets and can live as long as 20 years in an aquarium setting.
The biker cobra
We’ve often heard of people getting bitten by cobras, whether in their homes or the wild. King cobras are one of the most venomous snakes in the world. When threatened, they can lift up to a third of their body off the ground and move forward to attack.
We’re not sure if the snake on the photo is a king cobra, but it looks like one. We’re wondering how it got there though. Was it a pet, and did its owner think it would be a good idea to take it with him for a grocery run? Did he play the flute to make it come out of the hole? So many questions and no answers in sight.
Careful with your butt
Nowadays, you have to be careful with your butt. Gone are the days when you can just sit anywhere, and no harm comes to you. Seriously though, how horrified would you be if you went to the toilet to do your business early in the morning and saw this?
Can you imagine if you sat on the toilet seat without inspecting it first? Your butt would be swollen and paralyzed, and you’d be in tons of pain. This most probably happened in Australia; they have all manners of critters invading homes down there.
A sight we don’t want to see
It pays to be very careful with whatever you put in your mouth because the last thing you want inside you is intestinal worms. Just the thought of worms moving inside you makes us want to squirm. Intestinal worms live in and feed off their living host.
Among the most common parasitic worms found in humans are roundworms, flatworms, flukes, and thorny-headed worms. Please refrain from eating undercooked or raw poultry, fish, or meat and disinfect your utensils, cutting boards, and countertops whenever they touch raw meat. If you’re not convinced yet, we’re quite sure this picture of intestinal worms will do the trick.
Did the coyote grow a tail in its mouth?
Coyotes are often mistaken for domesticated dogs, but they have a few distinguishing marks. They have erect, pointed ears and tails that drop when they run. They have long tails, which are often half of their body length and they have white bellies and throats.
And no, the coyote in the picture doesn’t have a tail growing in its mouth. It’s munching on a squirrel. Coyotes eat mice, rabbits, and squirrels, but they eat other things too. Sometimes they also go through human trash and eat household pets.
Are those nostrils or does the fish have four eyes?
We’re not sure what kind of fish this is, but it looks like it’s a product of a nuclear waste plant. We wouldn’t be surprised if this suddenly starts to eat humans. It looks like a catfish, but the person who took the photo couldn’t identify what type of fish it is exactly.
He saw it in the Amazon, and it looks like it thrives in the mud because it has the same color. It has eyes on top instead of on the side, which is characteristic of catfish. Although it looks like it has four eyes, when you take a closer look, you’ll see that the other two are not eyes but perhaps gills.
What in the world is that?
This is another thing that we can’t wrap our heads around. It’s not a fish, and it’s also not what most people think it is, something we can’t mention. The person who submitted this photo caught this orange “thing” when he went fishing.
People on the Internet are saying that it’s most likely sea pork, also called sea squirts. This common invertebrate resembled pig fat, so they were given that name. Curious beachgoers sometimes collect them and bring them to the museum, but they’re actually pretty common, especially in Florida.
Excuse me, somethings growing on your legs
Leeches have such a bad reputation, but did you know that they were once used to treat everything from strangulation to headaches? Leeches remain a vital part of surgery. They are found on all continents except Antarctica. However, there are marine leeches in the waters of the Antarctic.
Not all leeches suck blood, but those that do are valuable in medicine. They are kept on hand by surgeons to use as mini-vacuums and clean up the blood. We’re pretty sure that this person in the photo is not undergoing surgery, but he must have passed through lakes, so he ended up with multiple leeches on his leg.
Get that tail away from me
Elephants are the largest land animals globally, and the two different species can be easily distinguished from their ears. African elephants have large ears, while their Asian cousins have smaller ears. They are intelligent creatures but are unfortunately killed for their ivory tusks.
But have you ever taken a closer look at the tails of elephants? They look like the photo above. The tail can grow as long as 4 feet and is tipped with coarse hair. From the looks of it, we reckon the texture is like that of wire.
What’s that in your mouth?
Eels live in freshwater, as well as saltwater, and even though they look like snakes, they are fish. They like to hide in caves and crevices, and they have very sharp teeth, so careful when you see one. This person saw an eel washed up on the beach, so he immediately took a photo because it wasn’t your normal eel.
The large eel apparently choked on his prey, a fish. It died and ended up on the beach in Mexico. This is a lesson that you shouldn’t bite off more than you chew. But, when fish have gills, how can it choke? Well, that’s a discussion we can take up some other time.
A turtle that’s badly in need of a manicure and pedicure
No, that’s not a parasite that got into the turtle’s shell. Those long and sharp things are the nails of the turtle. After seeing this photo, the first thing that came to mind was a turtle salon where they can go for much-needed pedicure and manicure.
We didn’t know turtles’ nails need to be clipped at least once a year until we saw this photo. But this only applies to turtles kept as pets. How about turtles in the wild? Who cuts or trims their nails? Perhaps there really is a turtle salon out there.
Care for a duet?
Frogs and toads look alike and are often mistaken for one another, but frogs are mostly aquatic, and most toads live on land. Frogs have teeth while toads don’t, and frogs are longer than their cousins. Another distinguishing feature is that toads have dry and bumpy skin and frogs have slimy and smooth skin.
We’re 90% sure that the creature in the photo above is a frog, but we’re fascinated by the fact that the frog and the tiny snake in its mouth had both of their mouths open when this picture was taken. The snake knows it’s about to become dinner, so perhaps it’s fighting for its life.
Is that 20/20 vision?
The eyes of snakes don’t differ much from the eyes of most land vertebrates. However, a few scientists think that to adapt; snakes had to reinvent their yes somehow. Snakes focus their eyes by moving crystalline lens backward and forward.
Snakes don’t have eyelids to protect their eyes; what they have instead is an ocular scale called a spectacle which gets renewed whenever they shed their skin. We’re not sure about this snake because it doesn’t look similar to others. It has both eyes in one socket.
Careful when you step on mud, or you might just end up like this person. He didn’t pay much attention to a ball of mud, but when he stepped on it, out came black widow spiders. Fortunately for him, they’re all dead.
The black widow has venom that’s 15 times more potent than that of the rattlesnake. Although their bites are often fatal to young children, adult victims do survive, but that doesn’t mean that it’s any less painful. It often results in muscle pain, numbness, and nausea.
Carrying a big burden
It’s a common misconception that wasps only make nests high up in trees. They can also make their homes in basements, attics, roof linings, gutters, and garden sheds. They can also make nests in the gaps and fissures in walls.
This snail was unfortunate to have a wasp nest built on top of his shell. Talk about carrying the world on your shoulders. How unlucky can you get? We feel pity for this snail, and we hope that he’s ok and that somebody removed the nest.
Stay away from us
We often think of ants as harmless creatures. Yes, they might steal crumbs here and there, but they don’t do a lot of damage. But wait until you come across woodland ants. Known to be aggressively territorial, they squirt acid from their abdomens that smell like vinegar.
This acid is used to ward off birds and other predators, as well as catch prey. When the prey is immobilized, they drag it back to their nest for dismemberment. Well, when you describe it that way, it feels like we’re listening or reading a serial killer documentary.
Monster under the microscope
Since the electron microscope was invented, we’ve been able to have bigger and better perspectives of tiny things. We can’t imagine the world without it. Imagine the tiny details we would have missed, but things tend to look a lot scarier when seen under the electron microscope.
Just look at these deep-sea worms when they are put under the electron microscope. It seems as if they are going to start shooting another sequel of Tremors. Where’s Kevin Bacon and Fred Ward? We need them right now.
A sphynx cat that will scare you at night
The sphynx cat is unique compared to other felines because of the absence of a coat or fur. Contrary to popular belief, they’re not completely hairless. They have fine, downy hair, which is often compared to peach skin. The sphynx also doesn’t have eyelashes or whiskers.
Once you get over the initial surprise of seeing a hairless cat, you’ll soon come to love the sphynx, but the cat in the photo is different from others because not only does it lack a coat, it also doesn’t have eyes. Imagine how scared you’ll be if you come across this cat at nighttime.
Not in the truck!
Wasps are dangerous because they tend to be territorial, and they won’t hesitate to use their stinger to attack. They also attack in packs, so imagine the injury that’s going to be inflicted on you by hundreds of stingers.
Imagine this person’s surprise when he borrowed his neighbor’s truck and wanted to fill it up before returning it to the owner. There’s a wasp nest in the fuel hole or the filler neck. If I were him, I wouldn’t bother. I’d just give the owner the gas money and leave it to him to fill the truck up.
Just what the heck happened?
We’re just confused as you when looking at this photo. What could have caused this? What happened to the poor bird that the only thing left of it is its claws and feet holding on to the tree for dear life? Did the bird decide to take a stroll but forgot its feet?
Seriously though, there are different theories as to what happened to the poor bird, but the majority thinks that the bird must have fallen to a predator, but we’re not sure what kind exactly. After all, there’s plenty of other animals out there.