You are here:

Interspecies Conflict/Realistic Group fights

Advertisement


Question
Hello Sir

Following below are some fight scenarios which could have happened if the animals have co existed. Please give the decisive winner with some explanations as to how the fight would have happened. No. in the brackets gives the group size.

1. Gray Wolf pack (12) vs Spotted Hyena Clan (8)
2. Male bengal Tiger (1, 250Kg) vs African Lionesses (3, 140 kg each)
3. Bengal Tigress (1, 170 Kg) vs Asiatic Lioness (2, 120 Kg each)
4. Matriarch spotted hyena (1, 75 Kg) vs Alpha gray wolf pair (2, 55 Kg and 45 Kg)
5. African Elephant Herd ( 6 Female, 4.5-5.5 Tonnes each) vs  Rogue African elephants (2 Male, 8 Tonnes each)
6. African Lion Pride (1 Male, 3 Female) Vs White Rhino (1 Female 2500 Kg)
7. Golden Eagle Pair (2) vs Female Harpy eagle
8. African Wild Dog (15) vs Wolf pack (8)

Answer
Hello Ravi.

Gray Wolf pack (12) vs Spotted Hyena clan (8): This depends partly on the average weight of each group.  Grey wolves usually weigh less than spotted hyenas.  They will probably only weigh around 75-80% the weight of the hyenas (animal-per-animal, not entire group vs entire group).  One-on-one, a spotted hyena will have a decisive edge over a grey wolf.  However, grey wolves work better as a team than do hyenas.  Hyenas are very durable and have bone-crushing bites (that are close to twice a wolf's bite force), but wolves are quicker & have better mobility.  This fight will involve both animals trying to get quick bites on the other, a lot of turning around to see who's where, and general chaos.  The wolves, with their number advantage, will dominate the onset of this fight.  In a realistic situation, the 12 wolves would succeed in driving the 8 hyenas away.  In a fight to the finish, however, the result could change.  Amid the chaos both animals will receive bites, but the hyenas' ability to dish out stronger bites and stand up to bites due to their tougher hide will slowly change to numbers advantage.  After 4 wolves are injured, the remaining contest will be one hyena per one wolf (which will favor the hyenas).  If the wolves are about 70% the weight of the hyenas, they will likely lose (too small).  If the gap is closed a bit (wolves 80-85% the weight of the hyenas as top-end weights would dictate), the wolves will probably win on sheer numbers, better teamwork, and better speed. If the 8 hyenas weigh about 70kg each, the 12 wolves will probably need to weigh about 55kg each to make this an even contest.

Male Bengal Tiger (250kg) vs  3 African Lionesses (140kg each): This is a dangerous proposition for the lionesses.  As it most cat fights, it will be immediate & constant contact (with biting & swiping).  The tiger will have a serious weight advantage, and its more powerful strikes & heavier bites will have a good chance of injuring one of the lionesses before they can subdue him.  Once the battle turns into a 2-on-1, it will be one-sided.  It would take a flawlessly executed gameplan for the lionesses to prevail, and that won't happen on most occasions against a tiger of this size.

Bengal Tigress (170kg) vs 2 Asiatic Lionesses (120kg each): Close fight, but if the lionesses work well together they can win.  The tigress will have a decent weight advantage, though, and it can finish one lioness quickly unless they vary their attacks to keep the larger cat off-balance.  Lioness are great at tackling larger animals as a team and conquering them, but a tigress can move quicker than prey items lions are accustomed to.  Slight edge to the lionesses.

Matriarch Spotted Hyena (75kg) vs Alpha Gray Wolf pair (55kg & 45kg): The wolves have a chance to pull this off, but not a great chance.  They will work well as a team and try to use a bite & retreat method (from opposite sides) in an attempt to wear the hyena down.  The hyena's durability will buy it enough time to land a good bite on one of the wolves when it gets close, and this will probably turn the tide.  Once it injures one wolf, the other one will be an easy target.  This hyena is probably too big.

6 female African Elephants (4.5-5.5 tonnes each) vs 2 rogue African Elephants (8 tonnes each): If the female elephants worked as a team and attacked (3 females per male) at the same time, they would likely succeed.  However, how they would actually react to 2 huge rogue elephants might be a bit different (especially if the males were in musth).  The females might panic, and this would lessen their effectiveness as combatants.  The 2 male elephants (assuming they don't attack each other) would simply be looking for targets to smash.  They would have a significant weight/strength advantage over the females, and proceed to charge into each of them.  The force created by the sudden contact would likely stun the smaller animals, and they would then be susceptible to being gored by the larger tusks of the male elephants.  If this was merely a show of dominance between the 2 groups, the females would have the total weight advantage and the numbers advantage (and be able to impose their will), but in an actual fight the 2 huge, aggressive males would prevail more times than not.

African Lion pride (1 male, 3 females) vs female White Rhino (2500kg): Rhinoceroses are extremely formidable animals.  Aside from their large horns, they are built like tanks, and their skin is tough to penetrate.  They can make violent, powerful turns with their bodies and cause serious damage with a single thrust of their front horns.  Lions are fantastic predators, but 4 of them will be outmatched in this scenario.  The pride will try to circle around the rhino's head to attack from the sides or the back, but it will be hard to hold on to such a large animal while it's constantly turning to face them.  They will struggle to cause any significant damage early on, and any prolonged interaction with the rhino will put them at grave risk.  4 lions typically have trouble with a Cape buffalo, and a white rhinoceros (even a female) is in a whole other league.

2 Golden Eagles vs female Harpy Eagle:  A female harpy eagle is huge (sometimes weighing over 9kg), and it is among the most powerful flying birds of prey on the planet.  Each golden eagle will only weigh around 2/3rd the weight of the harpy eagle, but with both birds attacking from all angles, the golden eagles will have the edge.  Golden eagles are among the most skilled fliers in the raptor world, and they will be too quick & maneuverable for the harpy to catch.

15 African Wild Dogs vs 8 wolves:  African wild dogs are masters of teamwork.  In this scenario, there will be almost 2 wild dogs for each wolf.  Each dog will weigh a little more than 3/5th the weight of each wolf.  The wild dogs will be smaller, but they will be quicker & more maneuverable.  African wild dogs have strong jaws used for holding onto large, struggling prey.  They are well-practiced in dealing with hyenas, and are experts (in group attacks) at timing each bite when the opponent is distracted by another member of the group.  Even though 2 wild dogs would have trouble with a single grey wolf, the 15 wild dogs will operate with precision in a situation most would deem chaotic.  Wolves are great at teamwork as well, but there are simply too many wild dogs in this scenario for them to be favored against.  Slight edge to the African wild dogs.

Best regards.  

Interspecies Conflict

All Answers


Answers by Expert:


Ask Experts

Volunteer


BK

Expertise

Questions regarding animal conflicts within realistic or unrealistic settings are welcome; my strength lies in medium-to-large species. Small animals (including birds of prey), prehistoric animals, sea creatures, and domestic dog breeds are usually within my scope, but to a lesser degree. I can't confidently answer hypothetical questions about human vs animal, arachnids, insects, or amphibians, but I am willing to field them nonetheless.

Experience

From a young age, I have been interested in animals. Starting with the original Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom and World Book Encyclopedias, I have seen many animal shows and documentaries and have read multiple books on the subject. I have a solid understanding of the physiology of many animals and interspecies conflict in general.

Education/Credentials
Associate degree in unrelated field; biology classes in college.

©2016 About.com. All rights reserved.