Can You Eat These 5 Deadly Australian Animals?

I recently wrote a post about 9 of Australia’s cutest animals and if you could eat them. Turns out there are some hefty fines, for that kind of meat, although some were sold in the local supermarket.

But what about the not so cute Australian animals? Ones that we hope never to meet in the wild… but might be a different story on your dinner plate.


Not to be mistaken for an alligator, the crocodile is the largest living reptile in the world. The saltwater crocodile found in Australia is the most aggressive of all crocodiles. Huge head, broad snout, jaws like a vice, it is the ultimate predator. It can grow to sizes over 7m (23 ft) and weigh over 1,000 kilos (2,200 pounds). Don’t worry historically crocodiles account for less than 1 death per year in Australia.

Deadly Australian Animals - crocodile

Can you eat it?


Crocodile meat is available in many places throughout Australia, while its leather is used in belts, handbags, and wallets. It’s like chicken, but on the sweeter side.

Can it eat you?


It only takes 1 bite. So please take extra care if traveling around the Northern Territory or northern Queensland. The signs are not kidding.

Deadly Australian Animals - croc

Great White Shark

Everyone has a shark story or knows someone with a shark story in Australia. The Great White Shark can reach up to 6 meters and over 3,000 kilos (6,600 pounds). They have no natural predators, other than the orca.

Since 1791 there have been 639 shark attacks in Australia with 190 of them fatal. The average death per year is 1.5. And the Great White was responsible for the majority. 

Deadly Australian Animals - shark

Can you eat it?

YES and NO!

In Australia, we do eat shark. You can find it at any local fish and chip take away shop called ‘flake’.  In fact, it’s usually the cheapest fish on the menu.

But not the Great White.

The bigger the shark the more toxic it can be. In Australian sharks the biggest concern is mercury. There are laws preventing the selling of meat taken from large sharks and excess consumption is advised against especially during pregnancy.

Can it eat you?


With over 300 teeth designed to do nothing other than rip flesh apart, one nasty nibble from a great white is enough to take you down to the dark depths below.

Box Jellyfish

These sea-fearing gelatinous blobs are shaped like a box (catchy name), rather than the more common dome-shape jellyfish. As a result, they can move rapidly through the water. But the most dangerous aspect is not their speed, they are loaded with extremely potent venom. They are, in fact, the most venomous marine animal known to mankind. You’ll find these in the tropical oceans around the north of Australia.

Deadly Australian Animals - jellyfish

Can you eat it?


While many Asian countries enjoy jellyfish I wouldn’t attempt or encourage you to attempt eating this venomous jellyfish. Since records began they have caused the death of over 60 people.

Can it eat you?


The box jellyfish prefers fish and shrimp. But that doesn’t make them any less potent to humans. The paralysis caused can cause death by drowning or heart attack, before there is even time to make it back to shore.

Sydney Funnel-web Spider

Writing about spiders is terrifying. But even worse is seeing one in your house. The Sydney Funnel-web Spider is the most dangerous of all Australian spiders and found in a radius of 160km from Sydney.

It has a large (4.5cm just in body) black body, is aggressive and has powerful fangs.

While anti-venom these days makes most spiders harmless, if these spiders bite you, take it seriously. Nobody has died from these spiders since 1980, but you do have to seek medical help quickly.

Deadly Australian Animals - spider

Can you eat it?


Much like snakes, ingesting a spider, even a venomous one, isn’t really a worry. But you won’t find them on my snack list any time soon.

Can it eat you?


Um, that’s a no.

Eastern Brown Snake

We have plenty of snakes in Australia. In fact, the second most deadly snake in the world spends his time in the outback. Usually a uniform shade of brown, but they can range in colors. That’s not helpful, is it? These fast-moving reptiles have a reputation for their bad temper. With a total length usually at 1.1 to 1.8 meters (3.6 – 5.9 feet), the maximum recorded size was 2.4 meters.

The Eastern Brown Snake is the species responsible for the most snakebite deaths in Australia – usually one to two deaths per year.

Deadly Australian Animals - snake

Can you eat it?


Snakes are eaten worldwide, but it’s not my idea of a tasty treat. Apparently it’s absolutely fine to cook and eat poisonous snakes as the heat is sufficient to inactivate any venomous residue, but don’t quote me on that.

Can it eat you?


Unlike their South American cousins, these snakes are too small to make a meal of a full-sized human. And the only reason they would attack a human is if they felt threatened.

BONUS: Drop Bear

Have you heard of the Drop Bear? It’s a super dangerous creature found only in Australia. More harmful to tourists than residents Why? Because they hate vegemite and without that natural repellent given from many years of consumption, well you are unprotected.

It’s like a koala with fangs. Mythical or real? You tell us.

More info is available on Australian Geographic or the Australian Museum.

Deadly Australian Animals - drop bear

Can you eat it?


Stay away from Drop Bears!

Can it eat you?


If you listen to hushed whispers from Australians living in the outback, the answer may be yes. But it’s hard to find any evidence. In fact, a Drop Bear rarely leaves any evidence after a meal. That should be concerning.

There you have it.

It seems like Australians eat more of their dangerous creatures than the cute ones. What’s the most dangerous thing you’ve ever eaten?



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Showing 3 comments
  • Martin

    Hi Erin,

    I would stay well away from all these creatures, and that crocodile is huge..!

    But snakes are my particular phobia.

    As for Vegemite being the only way to protect yourself from the Drop (!?) Bear – how about Marmite..!? Would that work? 😀

    • Erin

      Marmite would not work, it is disgusting and would make them more angry. 😀

      • Frank

        Yea definitely not Marmite..
        I had a cousin who lived overseas, and preferred Marmite to Vegemite..when he came over here the bears got him but left us alone ?

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