Interspecies Conflict/Questions

Advertisement


Question
Hello again Bk here are some more Questions.

1.How good would a pack of Gray Wolves do at bringing down Eland?I know eland like to run from predators which would problably be the key the wolves need.

2.How many killer whales would it take to defeat a blue whale?

3.Wildebeest vs brontosaurus at equal weigths?O this is a tough fight to call.An expert on here once told me that the brontosaurus hade a weak neck but at the same time it should have a more muscular build than the wildebeest.

4.Wildebeest vs Red Kangaroo?

Answer
Hello Gian.


Q: How good would a pack of Gray Wolves do at bringing down Eland?
A: An eland can weigh over 15 times as much as a large male gray wolf.  Elands are fast, athletic, and powerful.  A pack of gray wolves will be a mix of males & females.  Gray wolves are excellent pack hunters, and use teamwork & persistance to overcome large prey items.  Moose, bison, and elk have been taken, but ones that are young, injured, stuck in snow, or otherwise encumbered are typically targeted.  These large herbivores can be dangerous adversaries when full-grown & healthy, and wolves won't risk a tough kill if it poses a real threat to the survival of one of its members.  An eland is every bit as formidable as a moose or an elk, but as you mentioned, prefers to run rather than fight.  A large pack of wolves can certainly bring down an eland, but running it ragged to improve their chances of success will be a challenge.  An eland that chooses to hold its position and fight will be hard to defeat, but one deprived of its stamina will be easier for the wolves to overcome.  Because an eland can outrun a wolf, catching it won't be easy.  It also can run a long time without becoming fatigued, so a lot of effort will be required for the wolves to get to a point where they can safely engage the bovid (assuming they can keep up with it).  An eland hunted by a pack of gray wolves will be just as difficult to defeat as a moose (if not more so), and a large group (with perhaps 6 or more experienced adults among them) of the canids will be needed to succeed consistently.  Even lions have trouble with large elands!  

Q: How many killer whales would it take to defeat a blue whale?
A: A blue whale can weigh as much as 20-25 killer whales and measure 3-4 times greater from nose-to-tail.  An adult blue whale's massive size usually grants it immunity from predation.  A single killer whale has the ability to outmaneuver a blue whale and deliver bites without fear of a counter-attack, but the time it would take to subdue a blue whale by doing this makes it a waste of time/energy for the orca.  A small pod of determined killer whales can actually pull this off, but it won't be done quickly.  There isn't a certain number that is required to make a kill, it's just that the time it will take will depend on how many attackers are present, and no attack will be made if it isn't worth the effort.  It's doubtful a full-grown blue whale will ever be bothered in a normal setting, but a large pod of orcas can certainly pose a threat if they choose to attack.     

Wildebeest vs Brontosaurus (at equal weights): With radical scaling, the smaller animal will often enjoy advantages in quickness & mobility because its movements will be amplified (assuming it can move the same way regardless of what size it becomes).  A wildebeest is a swift animal anyway, and can make quick moves and turns when running or defending itself.  A Brontosaurus (Apatosaurus) was rather slow-moving due to its size, and used its long tail (and large size) to defend itself.  In a battle with a wildebeest, the Brontosaurus likely be stronger and more muscular than the wildebeest, but the disparity in speed & mobility with the bovid will leave it at a disadvantage.  The Brontosaurus won't have an effective way to defend itself from the horns of the wildebeest, and it won't be fast enough to land a tail strike before taking damage itself (consider at equal weights the wildebeest will be almost 50% taller at the shoulder).  The neck of the Brontosaurus can be a weakness when attacking theropods are considered, but it won't really be an issue in this particular matchup (or won't be the reason the wildebeest is favored).  Edge to wildebeest.   

Wildebeest vs Red Kangaroo: A wildebeest can weigh 3 times as much as a red kangaroo.  Wildebeest can be combative if attacked, and are actually dangerous prey items for lions, hyenas, African wild dogs, and other predators.  Their horns and hooves make effective weapons.  Red kangaroos are the largest of marsupials, and have powerful hind legs that enable them to hop with ease & kick with a lot of force.  The wildebeest will have greater lateral quickness (side-to-side; front-to-back) than the kangaroo, and will be able employ its attack more readily.  The kangaroo won't be able to consistently defend its upper body from the charges of the wildebeest, and will have trouble landing a significant kick against its larger, more mobile opponent.  Wildebeest wins.


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.