Over 50 snake species can be found in Florida, six of these being poisonous. If you are not sure whether a snake you have found is poisonous or not, leave the area where you found it and do not try to interact with it. If you hear a dry rattling, you may have found a rattlesnake native to Florida. The snake has detected vibrations from your footsteps and has begun to vibrate the end of its tail. It is warning you to steer clear, because you are too close. Most snakes in Florida are not aggressive. Instead, when they spot humans approaching, they will move to another area. They are likely to be out in the open because they are soaking in the sun’s warmth. If a snake seems reluctant to leave its spot, this is probably why
There are plenty of wild animals that live in Florida, and that does not exclude bears. As of 2002, Florida Fish & Wildlife estimated the bear population to be about 2,500 to 3,000 throughout the state, and human encroachment on their habitats increases the likelihood of an encounter and possible attack. How you react to this encounter affects whether you or others will be attacked. When a bear senses it has no escape route, it is more likely to attack. When humans or animals make direct eye contact with bears, the bear sees this as aggressive behavior and will respond in turn. When a bear feels threatened, he will often begin blowing, moaning, clicking his teeth together, huffing or pawing the ground. When he goes quiet, this is your signal that he is about to attack. Instead, back away slowly without turning your back on the animal until you are able to reach safety.
This insect normally eats pests such as flies and caterpillars, but when a yellow jacket’s food supply dwindles, it will begin seeking out the same foods and beverages you enjoy. Yellow jackets build their nests in the holes abandoned by mice or gophers. They may also build their nests in the hollow areas of tree trunks, porches, attics, sheds and under the eaves of your house. These insects will attack when their nests are disturbed, even when it is just a passerby walking through unaware. When you notice a swarm of yellow jackets beginning to buzz around their nest and nearby areas, back away slowly and cover your face and neck with both hands. If possible, walk to the entrance of a building, dense vegetation or a vehicle to get away from the stinging. Try not to run, because fast movements only agitate and attract more of the swarm. If a yellow jacket gets into your car, stop along the side of the road when it is safe. You and all your passengers should leave your vehicle, moving slowly once you have opened all windows and doors. Opening windows and doors makes it easier for it to find an exit and get out. If you are riding a horse that jostles a yellow jacket’s nest, get off the horse as safely as you can and move to a safer area. Your horse may panic, bolt or gallop when he feels the stings.
Alligators and crocodiles, like sharks, are animals of instinct. Some breeds are bad tempered and won’t distinguish between an innocent human or another predator. They will just attack. The animal may be hungry. If a human is nearby, he makes a convenient meal, even though he may prefer to eat something else. Crocodiles and alligators attack humans by error. They may want to attack something else. When they sense their habitat or nest is being endangered, they will attack to protect themselves, their habitat and their young. Immediately before an alligator attacks, it will make a hissing noise. Pay attention and get away as fast as you can. As it attacks, the crocodile propels itself out of the water, moving fast and far. Keep a large distance from lakes, rivers and swamps for this reason. Teach your children to do the same. If you are attacked on land, run as fast as you can in a straight line. Do not zig zag back and forth because an alligator can outrun you for a short distance before getting tired.
Sharks are animals of instinct, which means they are more likely to attack another form of ocean life, such as a dolphin or tunafish. This does not mean they will not attack humans. When provoked, a shark will retaliate by approaching the person and removing part of a limb. Sharks attack humans in one of four ways. They head-butt other animals and people immediately before attacking them. Another form of attack is the sneak attack, approaching a victim and attacking before the person realizes a shark is around. Sharks are known for the hit-and-run style of attack, grabbing their victims, releasing them and swimming away. Feeling the unfamiliar texture of a human body, it quickly releases and swims away. If the shark perceives a human to be a threat, it may attack out of fear. If it is touched, teased or if someone tries to grab it, the shark will attack.