There are two kinds of animals in this world: those without bones (invertebrates) and those with bones (vertebrates). I think it's pretty obvious which group is superior. We vertebrates have finely tuned skeletons that support our powerful muscles, protect our internal organs and allow us to grow to huge sizes. Invertebrates, on the other hand, are stuck being small, and are literally spineless (that opinion is in no way biased by the views of this vertebrate author, of course…).

Every now and then, however, nature seems to ignore the obvious natural order, and creeping, boneless predators take down some of our vertebrate brethren. In fact, looking over this list, I'd like to retract my earlier statements about the inferiority of invertebrate creatures. Please don't tell any of them I said those things.

Big spider eats a mouse  

This week, one Facebook video terrified the internet, and it was posted by Jason Wormal from – where else? – Australia, the number one destination for terrifying creatures.

The eight-legged predator had snuck into a neighbour's home – huntsman spiders are infamous interlopers – and it somehow got its hands (well, its chelicerae) on an unfortunate mouse. You might think the spider's stomach was bigger than all eight of its eyes, but this is one strong arachnid, and it doesn't seem to have much trouble dragging the mouse around, even while crawling on a vertical surface!

This is not the first huntsman to dine on a vertebrate, but did it actually kill the little mammal? Arachnid expert Helen Smith is skeptical. "I would be very surprised if a huntsman would attack a mouse and even if it did, that the venom would be sufficient to kill it fast enough for the spider to still have hold of it," she told The Guardian.

Predator or scavenger, the spider's surprising feat of strength has earned it some local fame. "We have named him Hermie, we have adopted him and he is now running his own extermination business out of our town Coppabella," says Wormal.

Giant water bug kills and eats a snake

What have we here? Just a poor, helpless snake with its throat caught in the jaws of a giant predatory insect. It's like a nightmarish Opposite Day.

This bug is literally known as the giant water bug, but they're also called toe-biters (yeah, enjoy that visual). The video was taken near Tucson, Arizona by Pacifica Sommers, and according to her account of the incident, the bug wasn't even fully grown – they get to be 12 centimetres (almost five inches) long.

In the end, the snake was likely dragged off to have its insides sucked out, because that's what giant water bugs do. We tip our hats to Sommers for the masterful commentary: "Aaaahhh!"

Centipede snatches a bat out of the air

This one might as well be a short horror movie. A 30-centimetre (11-inch) centipede crawls up the wall of a dark cave in Venezuela, seeking out bats with its wiggling antennae. You can watch what happens next over at ARKive.

Image: Tod Baker/Wikimedia Commons

The centipede hangs down from the cave ceiling, grabs a bat in flight and holds it in place while it injects deadly venom.

The bug is called Scolopendra gigantea, the Amazonian giant centipede. As invertebrates go, the animals are particularly horrifying. In addition to bats, they reportedly feast on lizards, frogs, snakes, birds and mice.

Venomous cone snail harpoons fish

If you thought a snail couldn't be terrifying, you thought wrong. This is a cone snail, and while you have but a tongue in your mouth, this creature has a venomous harpoon.

Cone snails have a habit of burying themselves in the sand with their siphon sticking out. They use this siphon to "sniff" for prey, and when they find it, they inject venom that paralyses the target almost instantly. Next comes Blob-style engulfment.

Some snails eat worms, some eat other snails, and some – like this one – specialise in spear-fishing. (Is this ambushing fish-hunter more or less terrifying than the famously horrific bobbit worm? I'll let you decide for yourself.)

Those same venoms that make cone snails deadly – even to humans – are actually sought after by scientists looking to use parts of the toxic cocktail for treating pain, and perhaps even diabetes.

Sea anemone eats a baby bird (yes, really)

A sea anemone eating a vertebrate? Do sea anemones even move? Do they even have mouths? What fresh hell is this?

Yes, sea anemones have mouths (which double as their anuses), and no, sea anemones don't tend to move. But that didn't stop this giant green sea anemone from chowing down on the head of a baby cormorant. The video comes from the archives of marine scientist Lisa Guy.

These seafloor-dwellers can have tentacle crowns up to 50 centimetres (almost 20 inches) across. The tentacles may look pretty with that green colour provided by symbiotic algae, but they're equipped with stinging nematocysts, allowing the stationary anemones to grab mussels, crustaceans, fish and apparently birds (or, in some cases, broken-off pieces of birds).

Top header image: Mark Yokoyama/Flickr