Chile or what is officially called the Republic of Chile is a country that is located in the western region of South America. The country occupies a long strip of landmass between the Pacific Ocean and the Andes to the west. It is a country that is close to Antarctica and it borders Argentina, Peru, and Bolivia. It has major control of the Juan Fernandez Islands in the pacific. The major language that is spoken is Spanish although many people have begun speaking other languages such as English and Italian among other international languages. The country is made up of mostly arid climates because of the influence of the Andes and this is the main reason that the country has diverse fauna and flora. Besides the Pacific Ocean brings a different dimension to the region and this is critical because it helps the country receive unique marine life. Thanks to its high biodiversity, you are going to see many incredible creatures in Chile such as condors, alpacas, whales, flamingoes, and king penguins…However, there are also some dangerous animals in Chile that would cause fatalities, and you must take precaution.

The climate ranges from the arid climate in the north, the Mediterranean climate in the center, humid subtropical in the eastern islands, ocean climate, and alpine tundra in the south and east. These climates are responsible for a wide array of fauna and flora. The fauna and flora of Chile are often categorized by the high degree of endemism and this is because of the geography of the country. However, the country offers you the best experience because you are not limited to the dry areas you can sample the coastal regions as well as the subtropical and arid regions of the country. There is so much that you can explore in Chile, from ice trekking to water sports among others. While you are exploring the country, make sure to watch out these dangerous animals mentioned below.

Andean cat

This is one of the creatures that you are likely to encounter in Chile and the cat is known to be very ferocious. Andean cats may appear to you are cute kittens, however, that is not the case because they have very sharp claws and teeth and will often attack without notice. They are wild animals; therefore, you should not confuse them with regular domesticated cats.

Since these cats are nervous and territorial, they can attack anytime. They live in areas above 3000 meters above sea level. Local people fear these cats as much as they kill them believing that it is for fortune. However, there have been cases where the cats have caused severe injuries to people who hunted them.

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Puma in Chile

Chilean puma is one of the iconic creatures that is found in the Canadian Rockies to the mountainous regions of Argentina and Chile. The huge habitat in Chile is a perfect environment for the puma to thrive especially in the Torres Del Paine national park. The park is one of the places where you are going to see the pumas thriving in their natural environment. These majestic wild cats are usually thriving on llamas and other kinds of creatures that make up the Chilean biodiversity. The pumas can grow to 3 meters long and 1.5 meters tall with over 200 pounds in weight. They are very agile creatures and they have some of the best predatory skills.

They have an exceptional ability to leap and catch the prey unawares and they then use their swift response to pound on them. Although the pumas usually pose the least threat to humans, however, they are very dangerous because they can attack people under extreme circumstances. It is important that when you are exploring the country you should keep your distance from these creatures and always ensure that you keep your distance from these creatures. Besides, the pumas are very territorial and they will attack anyone on their path.

Andean condor

Andean condor in Chile

The Andean condor is the largest flying bird that you are going to find in South America (see: Dangerous animals in South America) and you must know the kind of animals that are flying above you. This bird has a width of 11 feet and they are usually thriving in the Andes mountain range. These creatures are considered to be threatened animals and you must stay away from them because their excretions contain a high amount of viruses and bacteria, which could cause very dangerous diseases.

Since the birds may be fancy to capture in photographs and other materials, you must stay within the recommended distance to avoid interacting with their waste. However, if you interact with the waste then you must sanitize and clean the point of contact. Besides, you should visit a clinic to ensure that you are tested for any bacteria or virus.

Long Tailed Snake

This is an endemic snake that is localized to Chile alone. It is the second most dangerous snake that you are going to find in the country. It is critical to note that this snake is rear-fanged as well and it will have to swallow the prey before delivering the venom to it. This snake thrives in various habitats such as the northern and southern parts of the country. They usually grow up to 5 feet long and the long-tailed snake is dangerous because they are often territorial and can attack you with the slightest provocation.

They are usually featured by the white and black stripes, which run along its body. It is moderately venomous and they usually kill tiny animals within seconds. The venom from the snake is known to cause the death of cells, organ failure, and in some cases anaphylactic shock for people who are highly allergic. The bites from these snakes usually result in painful feelings, swelling, and even nausea and vomiting. You should seek immediate medical attention when bitten by this snake.

The Rose-Colored Tarantula

This is one of the creatures that you are going to encounter during your trip to the South American country. The rose-colored tarantula is often characterized by the beautiful pink of the hairs that are surrounding its body, and people are making their pets. However, it is imperative to know that they are very dangerous creatures. While the creatures may seem harmless and even attract people to make them pets, they are very dangerous because their bites are known to cause severe damage. You must interfere with the tarantulas in their natural habitat.

Since they are territorial, they will often attack you when they feel that they are cornered. They have some somewhat brisk spines and these are shot at the attacker and this can be very effective in smaller creatures. When they bite humans, you are going to experience swelling, irritation, and death of surrounding cells, and can even cause organ failure. You must avoid the areas that are affected by these creatures especially if you are highly allergic because it could lead to fatalities.

Chilean Slender Snake

The Chilean slender snake is one of the most dangerous snakes that you are going to find in the country because of the adverse effects it has on humans. They usually have fangs on their rear and this often results in dangerous side effects such as swelling, irritation, and even organ failure. The venom from the snake might not be fatal to humans; however, it is known to cause organ failure, tissue irritation, and death of cells.

The rear-fanged feature means that the prey must be in its mouth before delivering the venom and this makes it difficult especially if you are dealing with large creatures. The bites from these snakes are extremely rare in the country; however, you should not underestimate them because they can cause severe organ failure. In a situation where you are bitten by this snake, then you should visit a clinic for immediate medical attention.

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Chilean Recluse Spider

Perhaps this is one of the most dangerous creatures that you should avoid during your vacation in Chile. The Chilean recluse spider is a highly venomous creature and it is known to bite and deliver venom to the victims this venom is known to be cytotoxic and hemotoxic hence when delivered to the victim it will cause the death of cells and organs. They are characterized by light brown coupled with darker markings of the body and it is known to grow up to 4 centimeters long.

This kind of spider usually thrives in darker places and dark areas such as storage rooms and the crevices from the windowsills, furniture, and floorboards among other places. The recluse spider bites are known to cause symptoms to cause itching, pain, serious tissue damage, blistering, and swelling among others. When the spider bites you, it is going to cause necrosis.

Long-Tailed Pygmy Rice Rat

The long-tailed pygmy rat is one of the creatures that you might underestimate during your trip to Chile because it may not be venomous. However, according to recent research, the rats are carriers of the deadly virus, pathogen, and bacteria that could cause severe infections and diseases as well. The Hantavirus is a dangerous virus that comes from rats, it is often found in south and North America, and this virus is exceptionally bad because it can cause illness and death when you are exposed to it. The disease is often carried by the rats and spread on the urine or droppings of these animals. When you handle the fecal particles or urine from the rat then you are going to get the virus. 

It is rare for people to catch these viruses, however, it is very dangerous and you should avoid areas that the rats inhabit. The virus is characterized by stomach pain, headache, fever, and muscle aches and these often graduate in more dangerous symptoms such as coughing it often leads to the building up of fluids in your lungs and this makes breathing difficult and eventually death. The virus is very dangerous and almost all cases of people that have caught the virus have ended up dying. It is therefore important that you should avoid the places that are inhabited by rats.

Huemul Andean Deer

Huemul Andean Deer is an endemic species that is only found in Chile and they often thrive on islands. However, human activities and the increasing population have resulted in pushing these creatures to the extreme and they have moved to the small habitats in Chile. These species are very elusive because of the kind of hunting and poaching that has been going on across Chile and they are hiding from humans.

There is a chance that you might encounter them during your trip and you should ensure that you take pictures. However, there are cases when they are nursing their young ones and during mating season and this is when they tend to be very violent. They can attack you with their horns and cause severe injuries. If you are attacked by the deer then you should seek immediate medical attention.

Black Widow Spider

The black widow spider is one of the most exceptional creatures that you are going to encounter during your trip to Chile. It is a creature that is characterized by a red hourglass, and black fur. This spider is popularly known as the wheat spider in Chile because they are commonly found in the farmlands and wheat-growing areas. The black widow spider is usually thriving in garages, sheds, outhouses, and other dark spaces. The hourglass shape is distinct and the red markings on the torso make them easy to recognize.

These spiders are not very aggressive; however, any interference with their habitat or when they feel threatened they are likely to attack you. The symptoms of the bites from the black widow spider include itching, burning sensations, spasms, nausea, muscle stiffness, and paralysis of the breathing system. You must avoid areas that are infested by spiders. If the bite is not treated immediately, it is likely to cause death because of the difficulty breathing.

In conclusion, Chile is one of the best countries that you can visit in South America. The diversity across the country means that you get to explore areas that you would not do in a normal visit. You must always keep safe during your travels.


Aurimas Bio

Hi there! I’m Aurimas, a man behind Go Look Explore. I’m passionate about hiking, exploring off-the-beaten-path destinations, and everything outdoors related. Let’s connect.