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Interspecies Conflict/The World Of Plant Eaters


Its great to be talking to again Bk,hope things are still going well,and im glad your still available because I've got some more animal questions I've been wanting to get your opinion on.lets get started.  

1.How many Gorillas would it take to bring down a Cape Buffalo?

2.Giraffe vs Moose?

3.American Bison vs Water Buffalo?I know on one of the questions I asked you before cape buffalo vs American bison you favored the bison.I agree with that but what about a larger water buffalo vs an American bison bull?

4.African Elephant vs Wolly Mammoth?

5.White Rhino vs 2 American Bison?I think the rhino still wins but two 2'200 lbs bison should be a tough challenge.

6.African Elephant vs Hippo (in deep water)?

7.Whats the largest animal a Giraffe could take out with its deadly kicks?

8.African Elephant vs 20 Giant Elands?

9.Hypothetical-Lets say a Gorilla was in water up to his chest(while standing up)and he was approached by a Bull Shark,so then the gorilla was able to some how hit the shark in its sensitive nose.Would that be enough for the Gorilla to repel the Shark?

10.What are some animals that would make a good match up with a Gorilla?

11.Cape Buffalo vs 7 Wildebeest?

Thank You

Hello Trish.  Good to hear from you again.

Q: How many Gorillas would it take to bring down a Cape Buffalo?
A: A Cape buffalo can weigh over 1,500lbs, which is over 3 times as much as the largest gorilla can get (460lbs).  Gorillas aren't predators, and don't have the tools or the instincts to effectively overpower a larger animal as a group.  They won't cooperate like a group of lionesses or wolves, and aren't equipped with the proper weaponry (claws, shearing teeth, etc.) to easily get the job done if they did cooperate.  Gorillas also lack the mobility, quickness, and leaping ability to duplicate what many predators do.  A Cape buffalo can use its horns and hooves to defend itself, and is practiced at doing so.  If the gorillas were hypothetically granted sentience and could make the decision among themselves to cooperate and use whatever assets they had (great strength, long arms, grabbing hands) to wrestle the buffalo to the ground and hold it there, it would probably take as many as 8 to succeed with consistency (and would risk serious injury in the attempt).  

Giraffe vs Moose: A bull giraffe can weigh close to 2 1/2 times as much as a moose.  A giraffe is usually a peaceful animal, but will defend itself with strong kicks if necessary.  A moose is the largest member of the deer family, and can weigh over 1,600lbs.  Moose have wide-spreading antlers that can be used in clashes with other males or to deter predators.  An aggressive moose might succeed in driving the more timid giraffe away, but won't easily injure the much larger animal with its charges.  A kick from a giraffe can break bones (even ones of a animal as large as a moose).  Even though the moose might be the more persistent combatant, it won't win a serious fight with an adult giraffe.  Giraffe wins.   

American Bison vs Water Buffalo: A water buffalo can weigh almost 20% more than a large American bison.  With many buffalo vs buffalo matchups, size is typically the deciding factor.  Other factors to consider may include (but aren't limited to) physical build, horn shape, aggression, and fighting style.  The water buffalo will have the edge in size & power.  Its horns are longer, forming a large "C" and sloping backward.  The bison's horns jut out from the sides of the head and point upward.  Both bovids can be aggressive, with neither having a significant edge.  Both animals will "hook" with their horns, but the bison prefers to use its head as a battering ram.  Very close fight; slight edge to the water buffalo.

African Elephant vs Wolly Mammoth: These animals will be close in size & weight.  The African elephant has shorter tusks, but they are positioned well for stabbing.  The curved tusks of the mammoth weren't positioned to stab effectively, but were much longer than the elephant's, and the force of any part of the tusks slamming into an opponent could have caused prominent concussive injuries.  Probably close to 50/50.

White Rhino vs 2 American Bison: A white rhinoceros can weigh well over twice as much as an American bison.  White rhinos are massively powerful animals with very tough hides and a tank-like build.  They have 2 nose horns, and the longer frontal one can be used to gore adversaries with.  Bison are bovids with pronounced shoulder & neck areas, and usually battle one another by ramming heads.  Even if the 2 bison work together, the white rhino will be too much for them.  The rhino's horn is in a better position to be used offensively, its hide is tougher, and its greater size will afford it too much strength for the bison to deal with.  The rhino will be able to knock the tandem of smaller bison around without too much trouble.  White rhinoceros wins.

African Elephant vs Hippo (in deep water): An African elephant can weigh 2-3 times as much as a hippopotamus.  The exact depth of the water will be of some importance, as any water deep enough to prevent each animal from touching the bottom will be very limiting to both of them.  If the elephant can touch bottom and keep its head above water (at least 9' deep), it will have the strength to repel the hippo if it approaches.  If the elephant can't touch the bottom, it won't be able to apply any effective offense (except maybe using its 300lb trunk).  A hippo has a large bite and long, sharp canines, but isn't a swimmer.  If the hippo can't touch bottom (anything much deeper than its 5' shoulder height), it will need to move by bouncing along the bottom to propel itself along.  A hippo's bite can injure an elephant, but the pachyderm's size advantage will make it difficult for the hippo to do anything without getting dangerously close.  In deep water (over 9' deep) it will likely be a stalemate, but the hippo will have a slim chance of landing multiple bites if it can utilize the bottom to move about well enough to outmaneuver the elephant (and it may not know it needs to do this).  The hippo might have a small advantage as a result, but will not be able to remain in water this deep without eventually drowning.  In water under 9' deep, the elephant will have enough maneuverability to be favored.  Realistically the hippo won't attack the elephant, so this scenario assumes that it has a reason to do so.  On most occasions, stalemate.

Q: Whats the largest animal a Giraffe could take out with its deadly kicks?
A: The back kicks of a giraffe are extremely powerful.  The hooves can be wider across than a dinner plate.  The largest animal that a giraffe will intentionally kick with regularity is the lion, which can reach 550lbs in weight and stand 4' at the shoulder.  A well-placed kick can kill an adult lion.  Theoretically speaking, a giraffe's kick would be powerful enough to take out animals much larger than this if the opportunity ever presented itself.  A Nile crocodile can weigh well over 1/2 a ton, but an accurate kick to the head by a giraffe might very well kill one.  Even a large bovid (gaur, water buffalo, yak, bison, etc.) or a large ursid (Kodiak bear, polar bear, etc.) could be taken out if one of these kicks lands in the head area.  An elephant or a rhino is probably too large and tough to be "taken out" with a head kick (assuming the head was placed in the proper range for this to happen) unless multiple ones were landed, and a hippo might only be stunned.  Animals like walruses and elephant seals might be vulnerable, though.  If the kick is as strong as a 2-ton bull giraffe can deliver and it lands in the most vulnerable spot possible, I would only be confident saying the elephant and the larger rhinos would be able to shake it off.  

African Elephant vs 20 Giant Elands: An African elephant can weigh 6 times as much as a giant eland and be over twice as tall at the shoulder.  Elephants are extremely strong animals that can carry, push, and pull large amounts of weight.  They can be aggressive at times, and occasionally "bully" smaller animals (even rhinos and hippos).  Giant elands are large, agile antelopes with spiral-shaped horns.  A charge from an eland can wound an elephant if the horns are angled correctly, but only a large accumulation of such wounds would effect the elephant to any measurable degree.  The movement of an elephant into an eland can easily topple it over, and a determined elephant will knock the group of elands over like bowling pins.  The elands won't fight together as a group, and any that get near the elephant will be in danger of being crushed of injured by the tusks/trunk of the pachyderm.  As large as elands are, they don't have the ability to be effective in this kind of battle.  African elephant wins.

Q: Hypothetical-Lets say a Gorilla was in water up to his chest (while standing up) and he was approached by a Bull Shark, so then the gorilla was able to some how hit the shark in its sensitive nose.  Would that be enough for the Gorilla to repel the Shark?
A: I believe so.  Humans have deterred sharks with a punch to the nose, and a gorilla is many, many times stronger.  A bull shark isn't that much heavier than a large gorilla, and will likely feel the force of a gorilla's strike.  It's quite possible that a shark larger than a bull shark might be repelled as well.  It might not deter the bull shark every time (and the gorilla might receive a bite), but sharks generally avoid face-to-face confrontations and back away when met with strong resistance.  A solid, accurate hit will probably repel the shark.

Q: What are some animals that would make a good match up with a Gorilla?
A: Among the big cats, the jaguar is the closest.  I favor it slightly over the gorilla.  Leopards and pumas aren't quite large enough to be favored against a gorilla face-to-face, and lionesses are too large and battle-tested to lose to the ape.  Among bears, the sloth bear and the spectacled bear (which both weigh a little bit less than the gorilla) are a bit too formidable due to better weaponry (claws).  Sun bears are too small.  A giant panda is a good matchup.  A gorilla would probably scare a panda away in a realistic confrontation, but a panda will be equipped to compete if the battle gets serious.  Among suids, the warthog and the wild boar are too large and dangerous (a gorilla won't know how to deal with them), and the peccaries are too small (the largest ones weigh less than 1/4th the gorilla's weight).  The red river hog is a closer matchup (weighs about half of the gorilla's weight), but would still be favored over the ape.  Among reptiles, the Komodo dragon might be an interesting opponent.  The gorilla will die if bitten, but may get the better of the initial skirmish if it stands its ground.  The green anaconda can approach the weight of a gorilla, and will be a good matchup for it.  The gorilla's chances will be better on land than in the water of course, but either battle will be challenging.  The ostrich weighs about 2/3rd of the gorilla's weight, but can injure it easily with kicks.  The gorilla has the strength to pull it down, but might not have the know-how.  The ostrich is probably too big, but the emu and the cassowary will be too small.  The red kangaroo will weigh less than half of the gorilla's weight, but will be a decent matchup for it.  The gorilla might not know how to initially avoid the kangaroo's kicks, but its size advantage gives it a good chance to succeed.  No canid is large enough to take on a gorilla solo, and no hyena is either.  The prehistoric giant hyena (Pachycrocuta brevirostris) would have been a great matchup for a gorilla.

Cape Buffalo vs 7 Wildebeests: A Cape buffalo can weigh anywhere from 2 1/2 to over 3 times as much as a wildebeest.  A Cape buffalo is an unpredictable, aggressive bovid that is practiced at battling lions.  It has thick, sharp horns that join at the forehead to form a protective shield of sorts (called a boss) to help protect its head.  The wildebeest is also practiced as dealing with lions, and although it can be a formidable prey item for these big cats, it isn't on the same level as a Cape buffalo.  In a realistic confrontation, the Cape buffalo would bully the smaller wildebeests around.  It could injure one of them much easier than they could injure it.  If the wildebeests were unnaturally infused with a urgency to attack the Cape buffalo without regard to their own safety, they might succeed in driving it away (although they might lose a member or two to injury).  Overall edge to Cape buffalo.

Best regards.

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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.


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.

Associate degree in unrelated field; biology classes in college.

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