Split-Second Killers: Nature’s Fastest Predators

Not all hunters are created equal. With sports-car speeds, trapdoor lairs and mini vapor bomb attacks, some predators defy the laws of physics with their unique hunting methods. World’s Deadliest: Speed Kills explores these animals in all their fast-action glory.

The quintessential split-second killer is the cheetah, the fastest land animal in the world. Boasting an incredible 50% success rate on its hunts, nature’s speediest feline can accelerate from 0 to 60mph in three seconds, equipped to fell a gazelle in less than ten seconds flat.

The speedy killing continues with the trapdoor spider, the industrious arachnid that builds a hinged trap door over its burrow. The instant an insect touches one of the tripwires of webbing outside, the spider bursts out with lightening-fast speeds and pulls its prey into its burrow – to a gruesome death.

No list of the speediest animal killers is complete without the notorious pistol shrimp, a tiny sea creature that packs serious heat. By snapping its powerful claw, the pistol shrimp shoots a superheated vapor bubble, hot as the surface of the sun, which instantly stuns or kills whatever unlucky target is in its crosshairs.

From spiked forearms and trap-like jaws to poison barbs and lethal karate kicks, the animal kingdom boasts nature’s most creative killers. Tune into World’s Deadliest on Tuesdays at 9P.