Avoid these insects, rodents, and reptiles at all costs. A bite from one of these could make your life a living hell or worse yet, kill you. These creatures in New York can be deadly if you get bitten or scratched by one of them.


Bats can transmit rabies to a victim with a simple bite. Not all bats are rabis, but if you get bit by one, you can contract the deadly virus. Rabies doesn't immediately kill, but if it's left untreated, it can be fatal, according to the New York Department of Health,

Once symptoms occur, rabies is almost always fatal. The incubation period, the period of time between exposure and onset of disease, ranges from two weeks to many months. Once rabies has progressed from the incubation period, treatment is ineffective; but because of the long incubation, prompt treatment following a bite can prevent rabies in humans.

Photo by Todd Cravens on Unsplash
Photo by Todd Cravens on Unsplash


Ticks can carry Lyme Disease, which is a bacterial infection that they can transmit to a person who gets bitten. It's easy to miss the symptoms of Lyme Disease initially, but New York State says to look for the following,

-Occurs at or near the site of the tick bite.
-Is a "bulls-eye" circular patch or solid red patch that grows larger.
-Appears between three days and one month after the tick bite.
-Has a diameter of two to six inches.
-Lasts for about three to five weeks.
-May or may not be warm to the touch.
-Is usually not painful or itchy.
-Sometimes leads to multiple rashes.

Photo by Erik Karits on Unsplash
Photo by Erik Karits on Unsplash


Rats are definitely synonymous with New York City, but they can be found all over New York State. Rats are known-disease carriers, so getting scratched or bitten by one is 'no Bueno.' Rat Bite Fever is a bacterial infection that victims of a bite, scratch or other contact with a rat can suffer.

Most people get rat-bite fever through contact with urine or fluids from the mouth, eye, or nose of an infected animal. This most commonly occurs through a bite or scratch. Some cases may occur simply through contact with these fluids.

Photo by Brett Jordan on Unsplash
Photo by Brett Jordan on Unsplash

Yellow Sac Spiders

According to the New York Department of Environmental Conservation, Yellow Sac Spiders can be poisonous to humans,

There are two family groups of sac spiders. Two species of small, pale, yellow spiders, called yellow sac spiders heiracanthium mildei (pictured here) and C. inclusum, are the only spiders in New York that are moderately poisonous to humans. They have necrotic venom that causes itchy or painful ulcerating sores that are slow to heal. In New York, bites attributed to brown recluse spiders are almost certainly from yellow sac spiders.

The bite of a Yellow Sac Spider will become inflamed, swollen and painful. It could take anywhere from 10 days to a couple of months to heal.

There is no anti-venom and an anti-tetanus injection is usually necessary. Some patients develop a mild fever and headaches after about 3 days and the condition is sometimes misdiagnosed as tick bite fever.

Credit: Life Underfoot via Youtube


Like bats, trash pandas aka raccoons can carry rabies,

Raccoon rabies reached New York in 1990 and has become widespread. Rabies is a viral disease with symptoms similar to distemper. Rabid raccoons may behave aggressively, salivate heavily, or have paralyzed hind legs. Rabies can be transmitted to humans and other animals by the bite of an infected animal. If you suspect a raccoon is rabid, avoid or destroy the animal and contact local health officials.

Rabies is usually deadly if the victim shows symptoms.

Photo by Jonnelle Yankovich on Unsplash
Photo by Jonnelle Yankovich on Unsplash


While it can be difficult to get close to a skunk, since they can hit you with a horrible-smelling spray that can travel up to 20-feet, a bite from one can transmit rabies.

Photo by Elisa Stone on Unsplash
Photo by Elisa Stone on Unsplash


Bites from mosquitos are super annoying but they can put you at risk for the deadly West Nile Virus and Zika Virus.

New York State reported the first case of WNV in the U.S. in 1999. WNV is now established throughout the U.S., Canada and Central America. Most people infected with WNV will not have any symptoms, and for those that do, symptoms are typically mild. Very few infections can lead to severe disease that affects the central nervous system, leading to inflammation of the brain (encephalitis) or the membranes of the brain and spinal cord (meningitis). Most people recover completely from even severe WNV disease. There have been cases of WNV from every county in New York.

Zika Virus hasn't been too much of an issue in New York State, but it can be transmitted through sexual contact,

Zika is a virus that is usually spread by certain kinds of mosquitoes. It can also be spread from one person to another through sexual contact or blood transfusion. For most people it is a mild infection with few or no symptoms. But it has been linked to health problems in some people. It is a serious concern for pregnant women, their partners and couples planning a pregnancy because it can cause serious birth defects.

Photo by Jonnelle Yankovich on Unsplash
Photo by Jonnelle Yankovich on Unsplash
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