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Is Jaguar capable of killing big crocodiles ?

Finland Shadow Offline
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#61
( This post was last modified: 07-24-2020, 03:46 AM by Shadow )

(07-07-2020, 07:45 PM)OncaAtrox Wrote:
(10-29-2019, 03:29 PM)DinoFan83 Wrote:
(10-29-2019, 08:45 AM)Pckts Wrote:
(10-29-2019, 08:29 AM)DinoFan83 Wrote:
(10-29-2019, 08:19 AM)Pckts Wrote:
(10-29-2019, 07:44 AM)DinoFan83 Wrote: @Pckts 
True, Pantanal jaguars are some of the biggest at 95 kg. But I was referring to jaguars (general), and Pantanal jaguars are on the higher end of the size range.
I never said they couldn't ambush and kill big caiman. I said the majority of the time they go for smaller or similar sized caiman.

1: They're well over 95kg, that's a small male Jaguar in the Pantanal
2: and technically you said they were "overrated".
3: We're talking about where Jaguar and Caiman coexist and in Places like Los Llanos and the Pantanal, it's no surprise that Jaguars thrive and are the largest on earth, this is directly due to the fact that Caiman thrive there as well. Like I've been saying, there is no Big Cat more adept to prey on Crocodilians than the Jaguar, it's what they're built for.
4: And there is no "majority of time," like with all animals, the largest of Caiman make up the smallest minority but that never stops a Jaguar from preying on them when they can catch them. It's all a matter of opportunity, big cats take what they can get. Lions and Tigers prefer larger prey but that doesn't stop them from taking Chital/Impala or youngsters when the opportunity is there.
5: That doesnt somehow make one over or underrated though.
1: Source for Pantanal jaguars averaging over 95 kg? Just about everywhere I've seen states 95 kg average for males including GuateGojira himself.
2: What does that have to do with the prey preference of jaguars? I was referring to jaguars being overrated in their ability to kill very big crocodiles (you gotta admit, a jaguar's being overrated if someone's backing it against an American alligator, American crocodile, black caiman, or Orinoco crocodile. Besides, I never said they could not. I said they were overrated in terms of it).
3: Never denied that
4: Exactly, it's rare for jaguars to prey on very big caiman. I never said they couldn't but it is very rare.
5: Like I said, wrong context

1: Rafeal Hoogestejin Fernando Tortatto both run the Panthera capture project, 
their averages are 100kg. You can see direct correspondence from them posted on numerous pages in the verified jaguar weights thread and the edge of extinction Jaguars thread.
But again, 100kg is small.
They have weights of many over 130kg and even over 148kg almost empty.
The 97kg average is from Almeidas book only and even he knew of 130kg plus Jaguars and Skulls over 21" scores. He also measured from all over the Pantanal and other areas as well and he did so during a time of immense human pressure on Jaguar and Caiman. In the meeting of the 2 rivers, that is where you have the largest cats and caimans around and that's not where Almeida did most of his hunting.
Another good IG page to follow for Southern Pantanal weights is called Oncafari, they too have a few over 130kgs but slightly smaller than the North.

2: In regards to someone backing it over A Black Caiman or American Alligator, I have no knowledge of that and no one here is making that claim.

3: Lastly, it's not rare for them to prey on large Caiman, I just posted numerous accounts of it occurring.
1: I never said they couldn't exceed 95 kg. But 130-148 kg jaguars, while they do exist, are by no means the average
2: I told you, that was on The World of Animals. Not here.
3: As I said before, of all those nonstaged accounts, the caiman looked similar to or smaller in weight than the jaguars. Maybe that's just what I'm seeing, but none of them seemed THAT big in weight terms.

The average weight for jaguar in the Pantanal is way above 100 kg, probably closer to 115 kg. There are multiple new weights posted in the jaguar predation thread to exemplify this, post #230 has a compilation of all of them.

If you are trying to go by the outdated hunting records of Almeida 40 years ago, then your information would be highly inaccurate. For one, according to his records Llanos jaguars would take the spot as the largest jaguars because the average he achieved for them was higher, but those of us who follow and study these jaguars know that jaguars from los Llanos are in fact smaller of average than Pantanal ones and are more closer to Cerrado jaguars in weight, although the occasional large male of 130+ kg can definitely occur.

Also, your claim that jaguars are "overrated" in their interactions with crocodilians could easily be dismissed by the scientific data we have that states that Holocene jaguars developed a specialized morphology to hunt large reptilian prey on the absence of large ungulates, unlike other felids in Africa or Asia. Jaguars have the strongest jaws lb for lb and the widest zygomatic cranial width proportionally of any felid because they need a powerful bite to break through the armor and skull of the hardy animals they prey on.



To answer the question of this thread, I noticed that the feat of the 3.8 meter black caiman was already posted. Personally, I doubt even the largest jaguar could succesful kill a 300+ kg American or Orinoco prime crocodile, or a black caiman for that matter, unless the rumble occurs within land then a big male might have a chance if it can position itself above the crocodile and target the back of the neck behind the skull. Other than that, large crocodilians are too much for any cat, including lions and tigers.

Since other big cats were mentioned, I thought to say something to think about. I have been relatively interested about crocodiles always as most of people, who are interested to learn something about wildlife and especially about predators.

When I was first looking at crocodiles ( long long time ago), they seemed to be almost invincible what comes to other predators, thick skin, big jaws and then what  is often mentioned, most powerful bite by far in comparison with other predators. So it looked like, that they could kill almost anything with single bite or at least rip off limbs or crush bones just like that...

But then, when looking closer, are they really that overwhelming and invincible? Even in relatively deep water, where they are in strongest position?

We have observations of some tigers, who have fought successfully with crocodiles in rivers and then famous case of Machli, who was filmed and photographed while killing a 12-13 ft crocodile (3,5-4 meters). I can´t find it surprising, tigress is after all bigger than jaguar and has even better capabilities to kill a crocodile. It´s all about skills and courage (for a big cat) to attack something like a crocodile. When on land, big cats have superior agility and all what it takes to injure and kill a crocodile, while being relatively safe. When a big cat like a tiger or a lion (or a jaguar) is on the back of a crocodile, what can it do? Tail is useless and so are teeth, it´s practically helpless unless able to walk into the water despite having a big cat on it´s back biting and clawing. A bear could roll over and get rid of something on back, but what can a crocodile do? If rolling over, it would expose soft belly and throat and it couldn´t move even that little what it can, when standing normally, it doesn´t have claws and strong legs like some other predators to fight back.

Then when looking more at lions and crocodiles, there can be found more observations than I can remember now. I´ve seen some game ranger diaries from 1960´s mentioning lions specialized in killing crocodiles and how crocodile carcasses could be found here and there, more or less eaten. Of course famous Bumi lions from these days show, that when they notice how easy it is to kill a crocodile, they do it. Over and over again.

And those crocodiles aren´t small. It looks like, that many in between 13-15 feet (4-4,5 meters). One lioness, when a crocodile came too close to her cub (at least if asked from her), bit of a big chunk of the neck of that crocodile, leaving there a gaping hole showing clearly all inside. Brutal photo to see. People who took the photo weren´t sure if the crocodile was dead or alive, when they left the place. Injury was such, that lioness without a doubt could assume, that she had killed that crocodile when she left it.

Then again, often is said, that crocodiles kill lions, like it would happen all the time. Question is, that where are then all those countless cases? There is one documentary showing one lioness, who probably was killed by a crocodile in the river, while a pride of lions approached a carcass in order to take it from the crocodiles. And even in that case male lion continued to the carcass forcing crocodiles to leave it. Other lionesses didn´t continue after what happened to this one lioness. The documentary left some room for speculation since they didn´t have footage to show, how that lioness actually died, but if we trust the narrator, it was one interesting case. One lioness died, but still male lion showed dominance over crocodiles in the night and on the shore of the river. Something to think about, especially when in one other documentary was filmed how a lone male lion went in the middle of the night in the middle of the river to eat a carcass. And there were also crocodiles there. But none dared to disturb eating lion. It was of course full grown male in his prime, but still alone.

Then there are at least two filmed cases, in which crocodiles have managed to take a male lion under surface in the river. What is interesting is, that in both cases crocodiles failed to kill and also in both cases lions got out of the water unharmed. Even though some people mention so eagerly how powerful bite crocodiles have... obviously it isn´t that powerful, that they could kill big animals just like that. It´s naturally just common sense to understand, that crocodiles don´t have so strong bite, when looking at frontal part of their jaws.

Fighting with other animals, especially with agile predators like big cats is tough and an animal like a crocodile has that one chance, if it fails in it, then most probably it doesn´t get another chance even in the river. On dry land or in shallow water it´s difficult to see how a crocodile could handle a big cat without a 100% surprise element. There are without a doubt some cases in which crocodiles have succeeded with all big cats, which no-one knows. Still when looking at known cases, numbers are overwhelming and not in favor of crocodiles.
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Balam Offline
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#62

@Shadow that is why I left out the possibility that a big male from an area like los Llanos or Pantanal would be able to get the job done within land.

The most impressive feat by a jaguar on a crocodilian recorded is the already mentioned case of an Amazonian jaguar killing a 3,8 meter black caiman:


*This image is copyright of its original author


My guess is that most crocodilians are helpless in land because their nape and skull are completely exposed, and as you said they can't do much in terms of agility to fend of a dexterous animal like a big cat, out of which the jaguar is one of the felids with the most developed grappling abilities. If a large male can get on top of the crocodile and lock itself into the crocodile's nape there is little the reptile can do to fend it off, it may take a long for the kill to get done depending on the size of the crocodile but in my opinion the big cat would have the upper hand in the long run.

One of the reasons why we haven't seen much cases of interspecific conflict between Llanos jaguars and Orinoco crocodiles is due to the fact that latter has been subject to major hunting pressure and its numbers are very low nowadays despite conservation efforts. I'm sure that in previous centuries when those crocodiles were plentiful fights between the two must have unfolded but went unrecorded.
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Finland Shadow Offline
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#63

(07-23-2020, 05:45 PM)OncaAtrox Wrote: @Shadow that is why I left out the possibility that a big male from an area like los Llanos or Pantanal would be able to get the job done within land.

The most impressive feat by a jaguar on a crocodilian recorded is the already mentioned case of an Amazonian jaguar killing a 3,8 meter black caiman:


*This image is copyright of its original author


My guess is that most crocodilians are helpless in land because their nape and skull are completely exposed, and as you said they can't do much in terms of agility to fend of a dexterous animal like a big cat, out of which the jaguar is one of the felids with the most developed grappling abilities. If a large male can get on top of the crocodile and lock itself into the crocodile's nape there is little the reptile can do to fend it off, it may take a long for the kill to get done depending on the size of the crocodile but in my opinion the big cat would have the upper hand in the long run.

One of the reasons why we haven't seen much cases of interspecific conflict between Llanos jaguars and Orinoco crocodiles is due to the fact that latter has been subject to major hunting pressure and its numbers are very low nowadays despite conservation efforts. I'm sure that in previous centuries when those crocodiles were plentiful fights between the two must have unfolded but went unrecorded.

What I find interesting is, that (at least some) lions flip crocodiles over and then use throat bite. 

13,6 ft (4,15 meters) crocodile with throat bite marks, killed by lion.


*This image is copyright of its original author
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Bitishannah Offline
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#64

(07-23-2020, 07:36 PM)Shadow Wrote:
(07-23-2020, 05:45 PM)OncaAtrox Wrote: @Shadow that is why I left out the possibility that a big male from an area like los Llanos or Pantanal would be able to get the job done within land.

The most impressive feat by a jaguar on a crocodilian recorded is the already mentioned case of an Amazonian jaguar killing a 3,8 meter black caiman:


*This image is copyright of its original author


My guess is that most crocodilians are helpless in land because their nape and skull are completely exposed, and as you said they can't do much in terms of agility to fend of a dexterous animal like a big cat, out of which the jaguar is one of the felids with the most developed grappling abilities. If a large male can get on top of the crocodile and lock itself into the crocodile's nape there is little the reptile can do to fend it off, it may take a long for the kill to get done depending on the size of the crocodile but in my opinion the big cat would have the upper hand in the long run.

One of the reasons why we haven't seen much cases of interspecific conflict between Llanos jaguars and Orinoco crocodiles is due to the fact that latter has been subject to major hunting pressure and its numbers are very low nowadays despite conservation efforts. I'm sure that in previous centuries when those crocodiles were plentiful fights between the two must have unfolded but went unrecorded.

What I find interesting is, that (at least some) lions flip crocodiles over and then use throat bite. 

13,6 ft (4,15 meters) crocodile with throat bite marks, killed by lion.


*This image is copyright of its original author

That crocodile must have been too ill and emaciated to be flipped over by a lion!. The most sensible thing to have happened is the crocodile being too far away from water, emaciated, overheated.
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Malaysia scilover Offline
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#65

I think it can. 

"A full-grown jaguar will be able to take any crocodilian, does not matter their species, a Nile or Orinoco croc, or any other cayman, even the black cayman, if the size of their head fits on its mouth and it can crush their skull with their single mortal bite."
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Virgin Islands, U.S. Rage2277 Offline
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#66
( This post was last modified: 07-27-2020, 10:59 AM by Rage2277 )

(07-23-2020, 07:36 PM)Shadow Wrote:
(07-23-2020, 05:45 PM)OncaAtrox Wrote: @Shadow that is why I left out the possibility that a big male from an area like los Llanos or Pantanal would be able to get the job done within land.

The most impressive feat by a jaguar on a crocodilian recorded is the already mentioned case of an Amazonian jaguar killing a 3,8 meter black caiman:


*This image is copyright of its original author


My guess is that most crocodilians are helpless in land because their nape and skull are completely exposed, and as you said they can't do much in terms of agility to fend of a dexterous animal like a big cat, out of which the jaguar is one of the felids with the most developed grappling abilities. If a large male can get on top of the crocodile and lock itself into the crocodile's nape there is little the reptile can do to fend it off, it may take a long for the kill to get done depending on the size of the crocodile but in my opinion the big cat would have the upper hand in the long run.

One of the reasons why we haven't seen much cases of interspecific conflict between Llanos jaguars and Orinoco crocodiles is due to the fact that latter has been subject to major hunting pressure and its numbers are very low nowadays despite conservation efforts. I'm sure that in previous centuries when those crocodiles were plentiful fights between the two must have unfolded but went unrecorded.

What I find interesting is, that (at least some) lions flip crocodiles over and then use throat bite. 

13,6 ft (4,15 meters) crocodile with throat bite marks, killed by lion.


*This image is copyright of its original author

a lioness can kill a 12ft -13ft croc but that croc doesn't look that big if it is it's pretty slim and i'm trying to figure out how any feline would casually flip a 13ft croc to apply a throat bite 
*This image is copyright of its original author
This large crocodile had been killed and eaten by the resident lions in the area. Measuring 13ft 6″ is the length of a medium size fishing boat               this must be the same croc here
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Malaysia johnny rex Offline
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#67

(07-27-2020, 10:53 AM)Rage2277 Wrote:
(07-23-2020, 07:36 PM)Shadow Wrote:
(07-23-2020, 05:45 PM)OncaAtrox Wrote: @Shadow that is why I left out the possibility that a big male from an area like los Llanos or Pantanal would be able to get the job done within land.

The most impressive feat by a jaguar on a crocodilian recorded is the already mentioned case of an Amazonian jaguar killing a 3,8 meter black caiman:


*This image is copyright of its original author


My guess is that most crocodilians are helpless in land because their nape and skull are completely exposed, and as you said they can't do much in terms of agility to fend of a dexterous animal like a big cat, out of which the jaguar is one of the felids with the most developed grappling abilities. If a large male can get on top of the crocodile and lock itself into the crocodile's nape there is little the reptile can do to fend it off, it may take a long for the kill to get done depending on the size of the crocodile but in my opinion the big cat would have the upper hand in the long run.

One of the reasons why we haven't seen much cases of interspecific conflict between Llanos jaguars and Orinoco crocodiles is due to the fact that latter has been subject to major hunting pressure and its numbers are very low nowadays despite conservation efforts. I'm sure that in previous centuries when those crocodiles were plentiful fights between the two must have unfolded but went unrecorded.

What I find interesting is, that (at least some) lions flip crocodiles over and then use throat bite. 

13,6 ft (4,15 meters) crocodile with throat bite marks, killed by lion.


*This image is copyright of its original author

a lioness can kill a 12ft -13ft croc but that croc doesn't look that big if it is it's pretty slim and i'm trying to figure out how any feline would casually flip a 13ft croc to apply a throat bite 
*This image is copyright of its original author
This large crocodile had been killed and eaten by the resident lions in the area. Measuring 13ft 6″ is the length of a medium size fishing boat               this must be the same croc here

My guess is that maybe the croc was trying to roll its body to escape from the lions when the lions got a hold of it and ended up stuck on its back. There are many variations in croc sizes. Perhaps this croc, while at 13 feet 6 inches long, was around 700-800 pounds.
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Bitishannah Offline
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#68

(07-27-2020, 01:15 PM)johnny rex Wrote:
(07-27-2020, 10:53 AM)Rage2277 Wrote:
(07-23-2020, 07:36 PM)Shadow Wrote:
(07-23-2020, 05:45 PM)OncaAtrox Wrote: @Shadow that is why I left out the possibility that a big male from an area like los Llanos or Pantanal would be able to get the job done within land.

The most impressive feat by a jaguar on a crocodilian recorded is the already mentioned case of an Amazonian jaguar killing a 3,8 meter black caiman:


*This image is copyright of its original author


My guess is that most crocodilians are helpless in land because their nape and skull are completely exposed, and as you said they can't do much in terms of agility to fend of a dexterous animal like a big cat, out of which the jaguar is one of the felids with the most developed grappling abilities. If a large male can get on top of the crocodile and lock itself into the crocodile's nape there is little the reptile can do to fend it off, it may take a long for the kill to get done depending on the size of the crocodile but in my opinion the big cat would have the upper hand in the long run.

One of the reasons why we haven't seen much cases of interspecific conflict between Llanos jaguars and Orinoco crocodiles is due to the fact that latter has been subject to major hunting pressure and its numbers are very low nowadays despite conservation efforts. I'm sure that in previous centuries when those crocodiles were plentiful fights between the two must have unfolded but went unrecorded.

What I find interesting is, that (at least some) lions flip crocodiles over and then use throat bite. 

13,6 ft (4,15 meters) crocodile with throat bite marks, killed by lion.


*This image is copyright of its original author

a lioness can kill a 12ft -13ft croc but that croc doesn't look that big if it is it's pretty slim and i'm trying to figure out how any feline would casually flip a 13ft croc to apply a throat bite 
*This image is copyright of its original author
This large crocodile had been killed and eaten by the resident lions in the area. Measuring 13ft 6″ is the length of a medium size fishing boat               this must be the same croc here

My guess is that maybe the croc was trying to roll its body to escape from the lions when the lions got a hold of it and ended up stuck on its back. There are many variations in croc sizes. Perhaps this croc, while at 13 feet 6 inches long, was around 700-800 pounds.

May be this is a new technique invented by lions? To make the croc roll, then fastly catch hold of its underside and start clawing!.
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Lycaon Online
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#69

The osteoderms of crocodiles are softer on the underside of a crocodile so it makes sense to flip them.
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Finland Shadow Offline
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#70

(07-27-2020, 10:53 AM)Rage2277 Wrote:
(07-23-2020, 07:36 PM)Shadow Wrote:
(07-23-2020, 05:45 PM)OncaAtrox Wrote: @Shadow that is why I left out the possibility that a big male from an area like los Llanos or Pantanal would be able to get the job done within land.

The most impressive feat by a jaguar on a crocodilian recorded is the already mentioned case of an Amazonian jaguar killing a 3,8 meter black caiman:


*This image is copyright of its original author


My guess is that most crocodilians are helpless in land because their nape and skull are completely exposed, and as you said they can't do much in terms of agility to fend of a dexterous animal like a big cat, out of which the jaguar is one of the felids with the most developed grappling abilities. If a large male can get on top of the crocodile and lock itself into the crocodile's nape there is little the reptile can do to fend it off, it may take a long for the kill to get done depending on the size of the crocodile but in my opinion the big cat would have the upper hand in the long run.

One of the reasons why we haven't seen much cases of interspecific conflict between Llanos jaguars and Orinoco crocodiles is due to the fact that latter has been subject to major hunting pressure and its numbers are very low nowadays despite conservation efforts. I'm sure that in previous centuries when those crocodiles were plentiful fights between the two must have unfolded but went unrecorded.

What I find interesting is, that (at least some) lions flip crocodiles over and then use throat bite. 

13,6 ft (4,15 meters) crocodile with throat bite marks, killed by lion.


*This image is copyright of its original author

a lioness can kill a 12ft -13ft croc but that croc doesn't look that big if it is it's pretty slim and i'm trying to figure out how any feline would casually flip a 13ft croc to apply a throat bite 
*This image is copyright of its original author
This large crocodile had been killed and eaten by the resident lions in the area. Measuring 13ft 6″ is the length of a medium size fishing boat               this must be the same croc here

I didn´t say, that casually flipping, just flipping. Big cats are known to learn things and some lions are specialists in killing buffalos, some are better than others with hippos and some kill crocodiles. It was said, that Bumi lions used to flip crocodiles over and then go to the throat. It was kind of trade mark for them. I´ve seen some other photos too indicating same, that´s why I said, that it´s interesting how at least some lions do so. It would feel easier in some way to just be on back of crocodile and maul it to death or so badly injured, that it couldn´t move anymore, but lions seem to disagree. 

Anyway how casual it is, I don´t know, but it has to be relatively easy for lion, who has learned to handle crocodiles. They are after all too slow to flee when on land and in that way easy prey for specialized big cat, who has no fear towards it.
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Finland Shadow Offline
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#71

(07-27-2020, 10:53 AM)Rage2277 Wrote:
(07-23-2020, 07:36 PM)Shadow Wrote:
(07-23-2020, 05:45 PM)OncaAtrox Wrote: @Shadow that is why I left out the possibility that a big male from an area like los Llanos or Pantanal would be able to get the job done within land.

The most impressive feat by a jaguar on a crocodilian recorded is the already mentioned case of an Amazonian jaguar killing a 3,8 meter black caiman:


*This image is copyright of its original author


My guess is that most crocodilians are helpless in land because their nape and skull are completely exposed, and as you said they can't do much in terms of agility to fend of a dexterous animal like a big cat, out of which the jaguar is one of the felids with the most developed grappling abilities. If a large male can get on top of the crocodile and lock itself into the crocodile's nape there is little the reptile can do to fend it off, it may take a long for the kill to get done depending on the size of the crocodile but in my opinion the big cat would have the upper hand in the long run.

One of the reasons why we haven't seen much cases of interspecific conflict between Llanos jaguars and Orinoco crocodiles is due to the fact that latter has been subject to major hunting pressure and its numbers are very low nowadays despite conservation efforts. I'm sure that in previous centuries when those crocodiles were plentiful fights between the two must have unfolded but went unrecorded.

What I find interesting is, that (at least some) lions flip crocodiles over and then use throat bite. 

13,6 ft (4,15 meters) crocodile with throat bite marks, killed by lion.


*This image is copyright of its original author

a lioness can kill a 12ft -13ft croc but that croc doesn't look that big if it is it's pretty slim and i'm trying to figure out how any feline would casually flip a 13ft croc to apply a throat bite 
*This image is copyright of its original author
This large crocodile had been killed and eaten by the resident lions in the area. Measuring 13ft 6″ is the length of a medium size fishing boat               this must be the same croc here

And based on one photo which I´ve seen, I don´t see any reason why a lioness couldn´t kill even bigger crocodiles, I don´t believe that 13 feet would be some upper limit. It´s more about it, if some lion or lioness learns to use his/her potential.
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Russian Federation TheSmok Offline
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( This post was last modified: 06-09-2021, 10:38 PM by TheSmok )

(07-23-2020, 07:36 PM)Shadow Wrote: What I find interesting is, that (at least some) lions flip crocodiles over and then use throat bite. 

13,6 ft (4,15 meters) crocodile with throat bite marks, killed by lion.


*This image is copyright of its original author
If this crocodile "was measured at 13,6 foot", then this guy must be a Bigfoot:

*This image is copyright of its original author


Assuming the boot is about 11.5 cm wide, the lower jaw of this crocodile will be about 50 cm long, and its total length will be about 3.1 meters (and even for this length it looks very thin, with a rib cage narrower than the length of a human foot):

*This image is copyright of its original author

Visual estimates of the length of crocodiles are rarely accurate. We have no evidence that he measured this crocodile with a measuring ruler according to all the rules of measurement, and did not measure its length in steps or something else. At least I strongly doubt this "measurement" based on what I see. You may have a different opinion, but I must also say that only a few crocodiles from Lake Kariba grow up to 4 meters in length. The largest animals measured in this region were up to 4.45 meters long, and the average asymptotic size of males is 4.15 meters (Moreau, 1997):

*This image is copyright of its original author

https://core.ac.uk/download/pdf/43542972.pdf

The 4-meter 30+ year old Nile crocodile is truly huge animals that visually should dwarf two young male lions... As you can see from the visual comparison above. Such a crocodile is not as heavy (it is unlikely to weigh more than 300 kg) as visually large compared to young lions. Crocodiles always look very large animals, which has given rise to many myths about 8-meter Nile or saltwater crocodiles that "were twice as long as my four-meter boat". Crocodiles also appear to be very large animals in comparison with big cats, and their massive armored back makes them look significantly heavier than they are. Valmik Thapar visually estimated the mugger attacked by Machli at 14 feet in the documentary, and now this estimate is published everywhere. Even when he used a graphically confirmed 12-foot estimate in a National Geographic article in 2016, he said that "the crocodile was twice as large as the tigress." However, 260 kg (assuming Machli weighed about 130 kg) is the weight of a wild crocodile more than 4 meters long, while crocodiles about 3.5 meters long weigh from 150 kg to no more than 200 kg if they are not obese.

Let's be honest, we don't have any solid evidence of lions or tigers kill crocodiles over 12 feet long. Of course, this is possible under certain conditions, I know of a report of a clan of hyenas killing a large Nile crocodile shortly before the end of a serve drought. The crocodile was without water for a long time and could not protect itself due to overheating and dehydration, much like wandering hippos, which lions often attack in similar situations. However, something like this has not yet been documented. Another story is the jaguar and the black caiman, as I know of two reports of jaguars (which is much smaller than lions and tigers) killing relatively large black caimans from the scientific literature. But caimans are not crocodiles. I would prefer to discuss this separately, because alligatoroids and crocodyloids are quite distant relatives (they evolutionarily diverged about 83.5 million years ago) and have many differences in anatomy, physiology and behavior.

(07-23-2020, 05:13 PM)Shadow Wrote: When a big cat like a tiger or a lion (or a jaguar) is on the back of a crocodile, what can it do? Tail is useless and so are teeth, it´s practically helpless unless able to walk into the water despite having a big cat on it´s back biting and clawing.

It's not entirely clear to me why you think crocodiles are helpless when attacked from the back, as we have many videos showing that this is not the case. Jumping on the back of even a 2-meter crocodile will be suicidal for any crocodile catcher, if the crocodile is full of strength and not limited by ropes. Crocodiles have very flexible spines, and they can attack upward after turning on their side, as in this video and photos:




*This image is copyright of its original author


*This image is copyright of its original author


Another way for crocodiles to free themselves is to make a "death roll", which seems to be a reflexive response to the grappling. It is not useless, since the bellies of crocodiles are not at all soft, and the throat of a really big croc is probably too wide for the jaws of any big cat.

After all, it seems like crocodiles regularly steal prey from big cats on land and are quite effective kleptoparasites, much like bears. This behavior has been described for muggers, Nile crocodiles, Morelet's crocodiles and saltwater crocodiles. If crocodiles are so helpless on land, why can a lone Nile crocodile join the meal of a whole pride of lions without any fear? And crocodiles do it over and over again, since in many of the interactions between crocodiles and lions, captured on video, crocodiles feed on the carcasses of animals killed by lions, sometimes walking many hundreds of meters from water bodies for this.

But your statement may well be more or less true of some of the more aquatic crocodilians, such as the Gangetic gharial or the black caiman. While true crocodiles have fairly strong limbs with differentiated locomotor muscles, these more aquatic crocodilians have surprisingly small limbs with limited mobility. Interestingly, no one has ever heard of a black caiman trying to steal prey from a jaguar what was recorded even for the smaller Morelet's crocodile (interestingly, the crocodile presumably arrived in response to the jaguar's vocalization, indicating some experience, perhaps instinctive, in getting food from the jaguars).

(07-23-2020, 05:13 PM)Shadow Wrote:  Still when looking at known cases, numbers are overwhelming and not in favor of crocodiles.
Are you making this claim based on any statistics you have personally collected, or is it a subjective impression based on reading the published accounts? As far as I can tell from what I have seen, this is not the case. There have already been attempts to collect observations with aggressive interactions between crocodiles and big cats and analyze their interactions, in which I also participated as one of the people who conducted keyword searches on youtube and facebook.

This is the final result of this work:




Full dataset: https://drive.google.com/drive/u/1/folde...5iYHNn5ysG





Full dataset: https://drive.google.com/drive/u/1/folde...Gm91MzwQYB

We have about the same number of accounts where crocodiles kill big cats and vice versa. You may disagree with this, but it would be better if you can confirm your opinion with some of your own statistics… It is not surprising that accounts where big cats kill crocodiles are more often photographed, since big cats are generally more often observed by tourist groups and their kill sites are much easier to find (crocodiles often hide their prey underwater). Despite this, the total number of accounts is still comparable. So far, there is no data collected on leopards and jaguars, but the former, as far as I can tell, are quite often killed by crocodiles because of their smaller size compared to lions and tigers, and the latter very rarely interact with true crocodiles.

Most sightings of lions killing crocodiles come from the shores of Lake Kariba and most crocodiles killed by lions are from 2 to 3 meters long. Lake Kariba is an artificial reservoir that is overpopulated with crocodiles, and it is not surprising that some lions (such as Bumi lions) have developed the habit of opportunistically hunting crocodiles, which are forced out of the lake by more dominant individuals. Lions kill hyenas, leopards and African wild dogs, it is not surprising that they can kill and kill crocodiles of the same size. On the other hand, how many crocodiles at least 3.5 meters long (a crocodile of this length is comparable in weight to an adult male lion) were killed by lions or tigers? Such observations can be counted on the fingers of one hand, while there are many fairly reliable cases of crocodiles killing adult lions and (mostly historically) tigers.

(07-23-2020, 05:13 PM)Shadow Wrote: Then there are at least two filmed cases, in which crocodiles have managed to take a male lion under surface in the river. What is interesting is, that in both cases crocodiles failed to kill and also in both cases lions got out of the water unharmed. Even though some people mention so eagerly how powerful bite crocodiles have... obviously it isn´t that powerful, that they could kill big animals just like that. It´s naturally just common sense to understand, that crocodiles don´t have so strong bite, when looking at frontal part of their jaws.

Be sure that not only the really big crocs go after swimming big cats. In all cases where lions survived attacks of crocodiles in the water, crocodiles were hardly larger than lions. I saw only one video in which a really large crocodile (about 4.5 meters long) was chasing a young male lion, but the lion dodged the attack on the shore and ran away. It is not surprising that it is difficult for one predator to kill another predator of similar size, especially such a dexterous predator as a big cat, which can easily avoid a bone-crushing bite due to its flexibility (note that crocodiles do not ambush swimming big cats, but actively pursue them, and in such cases they lose the element of surprise). The skins of carnivorous mammals are very durable, it is not surprising that a big cat can avoid serious injury if the crocodile does not get a good grip, despite the really strong bite of crocs even at the tip of the jaws (Erickson et al., 2012). Haven't you seen how much effort it takes for a large clan of hyenas to injure a lone lioness?

It's no less common to see crocodiles fighting off groups of lions on land, and there is a report where a leopard failed to kill a similarly-sized mugger crocodile after an hour and a half of fighting. It took the tigress Machli 13 hours to kill the drought-weakened 12-foot mugger, while almost any other animal under 200 kg in weight would be killed in a few minutes after a good grip on the neck. Crocodiles (not yacare/spectacled caimans, with their relatively small skulls and slender necks that fit easily into the jaguar's mouth) are also very tough and difficult to kill.
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