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Animal Vs. Unarmed Human Being - List animals that would "win" in fights vs. humans-varied perc (May/09/2011 )

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I am not a scientist. I am a writer. I hope this forum can help me identify some animals that would "win" in a "fight" with an unarmed male human being of average height and weight a certain percentage of the time. As follows:

Please list animals that would "win" approximately 1 out of 10 times they "fought" an unarmed human being.

More detail: The male human being is physically and mentally "average," not "super-strong" or "super-smart," but also not "super-weak" or "super-dumb." He can use elements in the environment to "win." However, imagine the fight takes place in nature, say, a desert environment where any elements in the environment are not going to give the human a huge advantage. The human might find sticks and rocks, but not much more.

While this is possibly the least scientific question posted here, it is serious and would be a big help for me on my current project.



Eum, there are many animals that would win....

A lion for example
other catlike animals have less change , but a lion is very strong and uses his power (more then speed and biteforce) to win.

a cougar for example is less strong, but faster, but there is a change you could beat it down.. A lion , forget it, if he puts his power in his legs and pushes you...

Another example: hippos.. they kill more people then you think.. they are very dangerous...

Weird question anyway.


Larger apes and wolf/cougar/leopard perhaps (apes such as chimps are much stronger and have a strong set of teeth, but normally won't feed on humans, but can attack because of territory or hierarchy issues; wolf and similar sized predators have a minor chance, but sometimes it might work). I guess most really large cats (i.e. tiger, lion) and bears such as grizzly will have a high chance (9-10/10), if they really want.
Anyway humans always can try to scare off the animals, this can work but not always, depending on hunger of the opponent and measures. I.e. predators are opportunists, and it's a trade-off between need for food and danger to be injured by the prey. So if they really need food they're much more aggressive and approach larger prey, if they're not very hungry they won't take the risk to attack a similar sized prey, and if they're full, there's no interest at all. And that's true for most predators, even tigers.


lol. Probably just about any animal the size of a police dog or larger.

Humans have powerful brains, but that's about it. ;)


I forgot to mention this, but the only known mammal that activly hunt people are polar bears.

(by this I mean: they see people as preys, food)


But tigers and lions, too. And the countries where they occur have higher population densities, making an encounter much more probable.


hobglobin on Thu May 19 20:00:22 2011 said:

But tigers and lions, too. And the countries where they occur have higher population densities, making an encounter much more probable.

Well,I was always told that lions and tigers will attack less then polar bears and if the attack its more to defend themself rather than they see you as a meal.


I just skimmed over the wikipedia texts as I remembered the film "The Ghost and the Darkness". I guess it's not really common, but if you read wikipedia it's surprisingly much killing. Partly because the countries (African and India) have a compared to Arctic regions high population density (humans) and partly because game became rare there.
But I guess except these notorious maneaters as described in a few lions and tigers (and polar bears?), no animal actively only hunts humans, but they take them if they have the opportunity.


But if you speak about africa, then you need to mention hippos for sure, because they kill more people that lions or any other animal out there.. altough, hippos wont eat people, they just kill them.

All I remember from courses on mammals/bears etc is that polar bears would for sure see a human as a potential meal while other animals would not do this very fast.
(but then again: how do prove stuff like this? If a lion kills/attacks a human and eats it partly... )

Also many stories about lions killing people is often the result of people closing in the territory if the lions for example.
(a famous story is that of an ape in africa that killed 10+ people... )


Yes hippos kill a lot of people, but they don't hunt, isn't it their (violent) territorial behaviour?
And polar bears, perhaps it's because they have to check out every possible prey they notice, because the prey number is anyway not that large, whereas a lion or tiger usually always finds prey...
And your last sentence I didn't get.

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