In honor of the impending holiday, the LA Times offers up a selection of thirteen "Nightmares from the animal kingdom".
No costumed ghouls, ghosts or goblins that may ring your doorbell this Oct. 31 can compare with the all-too-real, creepy-crawly, slimy and all-around bizarre critters conjured up by
Mother Nature. They're weird, they're wild and they're ready to invade your nightmares.

Number one on the list is poor Vampyroteuthis infernalis, whom I've discussed before. I tend to think of them as shy creatures who really wish they hadn't been given such a flashy name, but maybe they secretly love the attention. Who knows?

Like V. infernalis, most of the thirteen lucky winners just look like freaks and monsters, and can't actually hurt you. The exception is Barry the four-foot coral reef worm, whose sting can cause permanent numbness. Yeah.

Despite being manifestly outside the "animal kingdom", a fungus that turns ants into zombies and a carnivorous plant that smells like rotting flesh were nightmarish enough to make it into the list.

Now those would be some cool--and educational--Halloween costumes.