Giant killer hornets have killed 42 people in China since July, leaving more than 1,600 injured and dozens more suffering from multiple organ failure and severe allergic reactions.
But the Asian giant hornets aren't just a problem in China -- they're also found in other countries, including Korea and Japan.
Travelers would do well to know how to behave if they're faced with these deadly creatures (tip: walk away, don't run).
While it's easy to assume that the relevant vaccinations -- and maybe an anti-malarial medication or anti-histamine -- would keep us safe on our overseas travels, such an assumption can be dangerous.
There are plenty of unexpected threats out there that could turn your vacation into a nightmare --- and possibly kill you.
10. Loa loa
This disease is spread by the bite of the innocuous mango fly, but can leave victims with worms crawling out of their eyeballs. (Google "Loa loa" at risk, the images are graphic.)
It's only number 10 on this list because it won't kill, and may not even blind, but it's still pretty freaky.
For travelers to sub-Saharan Africa the best protection method is to cover up with long sleeved clothing and consider using insect repellent.
9. Assassin Bug
The Assassin Bug first finds its sleeping victim using its natural thermal-imaging camera, then a chemo-sensor that can detect carbon dioxide.
Once it lands on the face the bug feeds on blood from the lips or eyelids -- without its victim even knowing it's there. As the insect feeds it also defecates, and that's how a tiny single-celled parasite can leave the assassin bug and enter your bloodstream, leading to Chagas Disease.
Over the years Chagas Disease can lead to the stopping the muscular contractions of the guts, leading to the body filling up with its own waste products, or it may simply cause heart failure. The bite of an infected Assassin Bug supposedly killed Charles Darwin, after decades of suffering.
Although present in the United States, this bug, and the disease it carries, is normally only a problem in Central and South America. Sleep in a romantic thatched beach hut at one's peril, because assassin bugs love making their homes in such places.
If you knew that there was a large, slow-moving fly at large in South America, and that if it landed on you it was likely to lay eggs onto your skin that would hatch immediately and release larvae that would burrow into your flesh and eat you alive, then you'd probably squash it.
But the botfly has evolved to avoid this response by "kidnapping" other innocuous flies or mosquitoes and laying eggs on them instead of its intended host.
When the "kidnapped" fly lands on the skin, the eggs drop off, larvae burrow into the skin and make it their living dinner -- without the parent fly ever being at risk.
A botfly infestation might not kill, but is messy, and it hurts. Doctors will usually cut out the larvae pustule and prescribe antibiotics to clear it out of the system.
Again, the best protection is to cover up.
7. Intestinal worms, roundworms, hookworms and tapeworms
These creatures rarely kill, but they will cause discomfort and embarrassment. In more severe cases, they can grow in the brain, causing fits and seizures.
Tapeworms are usually contracted when eating under-cooked meat, whereas the larvae of hookworms and roundworms don't even need to be eaten. They can access a body by burrowing through skin, without the victim noticing.
Once in your body, roundworms share their victims' ingested food (although they can also block the intestines). The hookworm, however, feasts on the blood.
Don't eat under-cooked meat and never walk barefoot in developing or tropical countries because the roundworm ascaris lumbricoides is said to infect 75 percent of the world's population.