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Interspecies Conflict/male lion vs amazon predators


Hi there bk.i recently saw a documentary on lion's and i was amazed at the power of these animals especially the I've always liked the cat vs snake different kind of lets put the most formidable anaconda against the most formidable male lion,which is the most formidable animal strength wise and do you think an anaconda could actually kill this powerful cat?thanks again bk

Hello Chris.

Male Lion vs Green Anaconda: Male lions typically weigh more than green anacondas.  A large male lion can weigh 250kg, and a green anaconda seldom exceeds 181kg (which is about the weight of an average male lion).  Anacondas are excellent ambush predators, but are not adept at taking on similar-sized adversaries (on land) face-to-face.  Anacondas have limited mobility & poor stamina on land, and would quickly fall victim to the lion's claws & teeth (which may damage the snake's head or spinal column).  Male lions are among the best fighters in the cat family, as they routinely defend their prides against other male lions and sometimes help the pride tackle larger prey items.  They are agile, athletic, well-armed, and can make explosive movements.  The lion will be too quick to be captured by the anaconda's coils, and even if the snake latches onto the cat with its jaws (to create an "anchoring point" and pull its coils toward the victim), the lion's violent resistance will likely keep the anaconda from gaining any meaningful position.  Simply put, a lion can fight back better than a typical prey item targeted by an anaconda.  In shallow water the anaconda would fare better, but it would still be outmatched by the weaponry of the larger cat.  At equal weights (in shallow water), it will be close (slight edge to lion).  Once the water gets too deep for the lion to touch the bottom, it will struggle to compete against the anaconda.  The lion won't be able to apply its offense (paw swipes, clawing, biting) effectively if it can't touch the ground.  If the lion has its typical weight advantage, it will certainly have a chance anyway, but it won't be easy.  At equal weights (in deep water) the lion will be in trouble.  Overall, a male lion will be favored in a battle with a green anaconda.

Q: Which is more formidable strength-wise?
A: This is hard to say because their strength is applied in different ways.  Lions use their strength, for example, to pull down large prey items or drag heavy carcasses (among other things).  Lions commonly use their strength in tandem with speed with many of their actions, which is a demonstration of their power (strength + speed = power).  Anacondas use their strength to squeeze, and do so to suffocate captured prey items in their coils.  This squeezing is a steady, deliberate process that doesn't require a lot of speed.  When it comes to strength, both of these muscular animals are formidable in their own ways.  I think it's safe to say the male lion is more powerful than the green anaconda, but in terms of brute strength, the anaconda is certainly comparable to the lion (and may actually exceed it).

Q: Do you think an anaconda could actually kill this powerful cat?
A: In the right situation, yes.  Anacondas have enough strength in their coils to suffocate an animal close to double their own weight, so the ability is certainly there for the snake to kill a male lion.  Getting a lion into a position where it is coiled tightly is another matter entirely.  On land the reactions of the lion will be ample enough to keep it relatively safe from the anaconda's attack, and the sluggish anaconda will have trouble avoiding the offense of the much faster lion.  In shallow water, where the anaconda's mobility and stamina will be greatly improved, it will have a reasonable chance of getting a coil or 2 around the lion in the midst of a struggle.  In deeper water the anaconda could wrap around the lion with greater ease because the lion would have limited ways of keeping it from happening.  Even on land, if a lion isn't using caution when dealing with the anaconda, it runs the risk of being ensnared and potentially suffocated.  Although the anaconda is capable of killing a lion, the chances of it actually occurring (assuming the 2 species shared a habitat) would be quite slim.

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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