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Welcome to the mysterious world of the ocean. Have you ever wanted to go scuba diving deep sea to explore the hidden aquatic species, but then, another thought strikes your medula and you just envision Jaws, Piranha and The Meg come to real life. Oh, anyway, I just didn’t want to scare you, surprisingly but true we always have such freakish feelings when we’re in the middle of the ocean especially when we’re thalassophobic.

By the way, did you know that Thalassophobia is the fear of being in large bodies of water, fear of the vast emptiness of the sea, of sea waves, sea creatures, and fear of distance from land.

The vast ocean is decorated by exotic corals and sea weeds and over 30, 000 colourful aquatic natives who add life to the realm. The ocean is indeed a beautiful place when it comes to relieving stress and viewing those beautiful aquatic creatures, but did you know that the ocean has the deadliest predators compared to the ones we see on land and it is much scary to be stranded deep sea that in the middle of the jungle, and to that fact we have decided to put together a list of the deadliest fish in the world.

With all that said, there are some species that have quite horrifying reputation. And today you’ll have that opportunity to explore some of the aquatic deadliest species.

  1. Puffer fish
This Puffer Fish always had a little friend, who I think travelled with him for protection – Ko Lanta, November 2010

Scientific name: Tetraodontidae

Diet: Invertebrates and algae

The puffer fish also known as blowfish or swellfish is one of the deadliest fish in the family tetraodontidae, it is mainly found in warm and temperate regions around the globe. These deadly sea creatures are known for their ability to inflate themselves with air and water when disturbed or feel irritated. The puffer’s skin is very tough and prickly and when infiltrated it appears like a spooky ball. The puffer has a highly toxic substance known as tetrodotoxin in it’s internal organs, this toxic substance is known to affect the brain of it’s victim, causing weakness to paralysis and even result to death.

  1. Red Lionfish

Alain Feulvarch / CC BY“>

Scientific name: Pterois volitans

Diet: Small fish, mollusks, and invertebrates

This stunningly beautiful fish although very dangerous, is native to South Pacific reef ecosystem. They are known for their abilities to camouflage and performing lightning-fast reflexes to capture their prey. With their large pectoral fins and elongated dorsal fin spines, each species bears a unique pattern of bold zebra-like stripes.

They are known for their very poisonous fin spines that are capable of producing painful puncture wounds. This fish species when disturbed will spread and display their fins and attack with their dorsal spines.

  1. Candiru

Scientific name: Vandellia cirrhosa

Diet: Blood

The Candiru is a species of scaleless, parasitic catfish found in the Amazon River regions in Brazil, Bolivia, Peru and Equador. It can grow up to a length of about 2.5 cm (1 inch). Being parasitic the candiru mainly feeds on blood and is known to attack humans and would at times enter the urethras of swimmers in it’s proximity, and once in their it would erect the short spines on it’s gill covers and harm it’s victim with a painful inflammation, haemorrhage and lead to death.

  1. Great White Shark

Sharkcrew / CC BY-SA“>

Scientific name: Carcharodon carcharias

Diet: Large fish, rays, seals, sea lions, dolphins

No list of world’s deadliest fish is ever complete without mentioning a “shark”. The Great White Shark is one of the most well-known powerful oceanic predator for both human and other weak fish species. This shark species doesn’t play around like your kitty, fans of the film Jaws knwo the reason why. This species is found in many regions around the world, from Australia, South Africa to Bahamas. These great predators are known for numerous attacks on divers, surfers and swimmers, they are known to inflict a single bite on a human victim and would rarely return for a second bite.

  1. Moray Eel

w:en:Aquaimages (talk | contribs) / CC BY-SA“>

Scientific name: Muraenidae

Diet: Fish, molluscs, crustaceans

Moray eels are among the deadliest eels around the aquatic realm, they are mostly found in Red Sea and the Indo-Pacific regions. Morays attack their victims with a hidden set of chompers. Inside the gullet are pair of concealed pharyngeal jaws which help the eel ensnare its prey. Unlike other aquatic predators, morays rely upon a two-step strategy. First, the outer jaws firmly grasp the target. Next, their pharyngeal set shoots forwards, bites the unfortunate victim, and pulls it into the throat

The largest moray eel species is the appropriately-named giant moray (Gymnothorax javanicus). However, the most common individuals ever found are around 8 feet in length and weighed 66 pounds. It is believed there are also monstrous moray eels reaching around 10 feet in length.

  1. Tiger Fish

Viridiflavus / CC BY-SA“>

Scientific name: Hydrocynus vittatus

Diet: Small fish, sea weeds, birds

The tiger fish is an aggressive fish species commonly found in the South African regions. It acquired the name “tiger fish” due to its aggressive nature and hunting style. They have very sharp teeth that can cut almost anything due to their interlocking capability. What makes them worse is how they hunt in groups. The African tiger fish is the first freshwater fish recorded and confirmed to attack and catch birds in flight.

  1. Piranha

Greg Hume / CC BY-SA“>

Scientific name: Pygocentrus nattereri

Diet: Insects, fish, crustaceans, worms, carrion, seeds

There are lots of movies out there that already describe the deadliest nature of this fish species like the film Piranha. They are razor-toothed carnivorous fish species found in most South American rivers and lakes. However the case of their reputed ferocity, most of this species are scavengers and at times feed on plant matter. But still, you don’t need any reason to believe they aren’t deadly.

  1. Stone Fish

SeanMack / CC BY-SA“>

Scientific name: Synanceia

Diet: Fish, shrimps

These are venomous fish species found in the shallow waters of the tropical Indo-Pacific region. They usually rest at the bottom of the sea staying immobile and blending completely with their surrounding in appearance. And become difficult to spot and when stepped on they would inject amounts of venom into their victims through their dorsal-fin spines. Injuries caused by this fish can sometimes be fatal.

  1. Atlantic Manta
Manta Ray

Scientific name: Manta birostris

Diet: Small to medium-sized fish, zooplankton

Commonly known as manta rays or devil rays are species of marine rays found in warm waters along continents and islands. Most often they may swim near the surface of the water, flapping their fins and even leap out of the water. Whilst there are many manta ray species distinct in behaviour and appearance, the smallest manta ray, Mobula diabolis, in Australia can only grow up to 60 cm (2 feet) wide and the Atlantic Manta or the Giant Devil ray, the largest of the family can grow up to 7 metres (23 feet) wide.

  1. Electric Eel

Steven G. Johnson / CC BY-SA“>

Scientific name: Electrophorus electricus

Diet: fish, amphibians, birds, small mammals

This is an elongated eel species found throughout South America, it can produce powerful electric shock to stun it’s prey. The electric eel can grow up to a length of 2.75 metres (9 feet). It is one of the principal aquatic predators of the white-water flooded forests known as Varzea. It’s adaptation of shocking it’s prey is to protect it’s sensitive mouth from injury from struggling and sometimes spiny fish. The tail region contains the electric organs which are derived from muscle tissue enervated by spinal nerves, and discharges around 300 to 650 volts, this is enough power to jolt a human being.


The aquatic kingdom is complex and huge and filled with many dreadful creatures some of which might have not been discovered and we are yet to figure out more. If you feel this article was interesting, please share, and if you feel there is any deadly fish that we have left out you can add them in the comment box below.

About Post Author

Silvaro D'Silvas

An adventurer on pursuit for knowledge and to share it with the World.
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