If a lion and tiger got into a fight, who would win?

Avatar BCR | January 27, 2018 5382 Views 0 Likes 3.29 On 7 Ratings

ANSWER: While we would much prefer that people focus their thoughts on saving these magnificent animals than on who would win if a lion and tiger fight, the power of these two largest cats seems to raise this question in people's minds. While it would depend on the size, age and aggressiveness of the specific animals involved, generally tigers have a significant advantage. On average tigers are larger, but more importantly they are more capable of fighting standing on their hind legs. Some people have argued that the male lion's mane offers some advantage in protecting his neck, but this is disputed. Some reports claim that when lions and tigers were pitted against each other in the Coliseum in ancient Rome, the tigers always won. In recent centuries there are almost no opportunities for tigers and lions to cross paths in the wild because tigers are found in Asia while Lions are found in Africa except for a very small population in one area in Asia.

Our white tiger Zabu lives with her male lion companion Cameron at Big Cat Rescue. They get along well, but part of their play simulates fighting. These two were saved from being bred to create ligers.


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This post currently has 45 responses.

    • Adam Jeeves

      May 5, 2013 at 4:31 pm

      Over 806 reports state that out 1902 fights in the Coloseum, the Tiger won 91% of them meaning it won 1730 while the Lion won a poor number of 172.

  1. Vasili Nachaev

    August 11, 2013 at 10:42 pm

    physically- lions mane better protection to the neck than tigers whiskers.
    psychologically- wild tiger probably never fought another predator, lions fight to survive.
    mentally – lions warm climate gives them faster reflex and more intelligent.

  2. Adam Jeeves

    March 30, 2014 at 2:35 am

    The mane is an attraction for females, the darker the mane, the more testosterone.

    A tiger also has a 16% larger brain than a lion, so they're more intelligent.

  3. Peter Coats

    April 5, 2014 at 5:08 pm

    'physically- lions mane better protection to the neck than tigers whiskers.'
    not true. The article above even says this is disputed.

    psychologically- wild tiger probably never fought another predator, lions fight to survive.'
    Again not true. Tigers often attack large dangerous animals like water buffalo, so obviously have evolved to tackle large animals and bring them down quickly to reduce the chance of injury.

    'mentally – lions warm climate gives them faster reflex and more intelligent'
    Again, not true. Lions and tigers are both warm blooded so reaction time isn't affected by temperature (unlike reptiles, for instance). Also tigers, despite having a smaller skull actually have a larger brain and is it often agreed that they are more intelligent. Being able to hunt alone instead of relying on others supports this.

  4. February Oguryu Suhang

    April 26, 2014 at 10:50 am

    Hayena fwar wild dog fear.. Rhino fear.. The one and only tiger… When it gets hungry noone can stop it..
    It even killed a fully grown male eleplant… And tiger has much stamina than that lazy lion… But i respect both of them and i dont want to make them fight to kill just to know tje answer.. Peace

  5. Dekan Karim

    May 19, 2014 at 5:10 pm

    Adam Jeeves how u know that tigers 1730 times won against lion??? do u have any link that explain that?? sorry for my english… i ask for a link to read this information that u said abou lion and tiger..

  6. Noah Petersen

    May 23, 2014 at 1:29 am

    It is an obvious fact by now that tigers are superior to lions. Tigers are larger, more muscular, and stronger. Lions fight in packs so don't have to worry about one to one fighting giving the tiger an edge in fighting techniques. The tigers in these videos were young females who were caught in the moments they were fighting poorly. But anyway there are so few tigers and lion left we should not worry about tigers being superior to lions

  7. Muhammed Taleb

    June 6, 2014 at 7:04 pm

    oh please… BCR just love tigers more than any other cat. almost all of their youtube videos that are about big cats, have tiger in their title. the tiger is afraid of MANY animals. guess why… because they try to avoid fights with anyone. and that thing about the lions mane gives protection. just think about it scientifically, dont you think that if something is covering something would protect it from whats coming from outside? and lions are social animals. that means that they comunicate with each other, they plan how to hunt down a large animal. social creatures ARE smarter than solitary animals. everyone has a brain that inshallah works. try to use it and not just listen and believe

  8. Shahzad Aslam

    July 1, 2014 at 6:05 pm

    lion vs. tiger. The tiger has a size advantage. But it is slight though an African lion is bigger than any other tiger, except for the Siberian Tiger.

    Siberian Tiger weighs about 500 to 700 pounds .

    African lion can weigh 500 to 660 pounds.

    Siberian Tigers usually weigh 10 to 60 pounds more than an African lion.

    This size advantage dose not make it that easy for the Tiger to beat up the lion.

    Male African lion spends there first 4 to 5 years learning how to fight.

    Male African lions are way braver than tigers they will usually accept a challenge, they usually wont run away.

    Anyway The lion will win 6 out of 10 times against Tiger.

    Tiger fans just to tell you all of these videos of tiger beating lions usually Happens in south or north Korea in zoos. Very curious about these things, sometimes I thing that these battles are planned by stupid tiger fans in north or south Korean zoo. This is just my opinion not saying it is right or wrong

  9. Anthony Stirling

    August 13, 2014 at 11:57 pm

    Lions and tigers are both of the same genetic make up. They are cats…They are both pack hunters, they are both masculine, they both are noctuenal and hunt at night. I wish you would explain to me how creatures of similar characteristics would ever find themselves in a fight, or how one wouldbe clearly dominant over the other.

  10. James Ether Or

    August 22, 2014 at 12:29 pm

    One on one tiger wins hands down power speed agility smart, but lion isn't about going alone, they are the only big cats to live in large groups, and no fucking way a tiger no matter how exceptionally large, can take on a pride worth of lions

  11. James Ether Or

    August 22, 2014 at 12:38 pm

    The tiger is more power physically, it's been proven, more agile, probably from hunting all the time alone, while the lion(male usually don't hunt, unless with exceptionally large preys) smarter (with a MUCH higher brain to rest of body ratio, and also overall size, remember tiger are larger), and while most of us seems to think instinctively that the lion's mane helps them in a fight, expert actually suggest that it hinders the lion and make them slower, and the mane is only useful for attracting mates, so you have one that is larger stronger smarter and also faster and more agile, it's not difficult to tell who wins, that and historically tiger generally wins, but regardless, even if a tiger wins hands down again a lion, that doesn't matter because lions moves in prides, and tiger alone, which is the real deciding factor in the fight, no one will think that if a tiger attack a pride which a tiger is too smart to do anyways, that the rest of the male lions and the females will just stand by and watch, so lion always wins against tiger, just never one on one

  12. Jocelyn Messier

    August 29, 2014 at 12:27 am

    You clearly don't know what you are talking about. It has been proven time and time again that lions almost always beat lions during a fight. They are bigger, stronger, smarter and much faster. Get your facts straight before trying to mislead people.

  13. Brandy In

    September 16, 2014 at 11:37 pm

    I respect the lions hunting skills,team work and protecting their blood line by being a highly social cats but when it comes to one on one combat the tiger usually come out on top period.it is a provin fact since the roman times and present.tigers are more powerfull,bigger etc.theres no need for a debate.

  14. Antonio Turner

    September 26, 2014 at 4:32 am

    I say a lion would win, cuz in a fight size don't matter. Plus a lion is more battle tested then a tiger. Its more contenders lions gotta go through.. also a male lion don't run in packs only the females run in packs. He just run the pack.

  15. Awhio Francis King

    November 29, 2014 at 9:35 pm

    Lions have killed hippos elephants giraffes as a group their are cases of lions killing tigers and each other and yes there was that one script in rhome where a tiger killed a lion and that was done on that day from the reporter it says nothing about tigers killing lions on a average meet. Im just guessing that you tiger fans havent read about that rhome script yet your telling me to read facts. Brockhard you do have some good points ,eg environment weight length not size and hunting habit,technique. That is true referring to africa. Also one more point the lions that fought in the arena was from ancient europe as lions habitat use to be far and wide. They adapt far more better than any other cat in the wild and only ended due to human influences. For example african lions hunt in prides of 15 to 20 where as asiatic lion prides are far more smaller that is due to habitat like africa there is not much cover the prey has large herds like buffalo elephants and rhinos with attitude problems and they will defend eachother large herds equals large carnivor groups. Asiatic lions are really different to their cousin they have a matriac female with a few females and they dont really interact with males only on mating the males actually hunt for themselves do you see the similarities between them and tigers but lions still pack up though like males 2 or 3 females 4 to 6 and cubs with a male. Ill do one on tiger soon put the facts then ill do my own conclusion and you do yours i will say this the lion is definetly the most successful well established and most adaptive out of the 2 what i mean by successful is they dont need any interference from human to bring them back they just need their habitat back the asiatic lions will bounce back

  16. Ernest Ian Jagorin

    December 4, 2014 at 4:55 am

    Tigers are basically active killers. They kill to hunt to survive.

    Lions are much more political. Alpha males need to be strong to certain degree just to stay alpha in his pride.

    In a fight, a tiger will own a lion

  17. Brockhard Davidson

    January 1, 2015 at 10:27 pm

    I'm not sure why you're giving me information about what Lions do as a pack. We're talking about a one on one fight first and foremost. Some really obvious facts I'd like to point out. The average Tiger is larger, for siberian and Bengal tigers. Tigers fight with both paws, Lions strike with one. Tigers are scientifically proven to be smarter, or in lamens terms they have larger brains. As for the Rome report it was stated that their were many battles and that the tigers almost always won. I'd love the website that states it was a one time thing, a website that states there was one Lion vs tiger fight lmao. There is none! A tiger losing to a lion would be like a lion losing to a leopard. Size does matter in fights, especially animal fights. Tigers have larger paws, brains, muscles, and body mass. What more needs to be said? Tigers specialize in one on one fights! Lions do not! It's much more political than one on one. Before you reply, please search for your common sense, it's missing. And provide a link with your statements. There are sites that think Lions would win,but they are very few in numbers.

  18. simba

    August 10, 2015 at 6:40 am

    Lions are fighters by nature- they will fight to death. Its a question of size. A tiger will slip away when it turns ugly! A lion will holdon. Thats why its called the king of the Jungle!

  19. ElJones

    March 25, 2016 at 7:00 am

    Tigers are heavier and a little faster but the Lion is taller and relentless. The lion will kill a tiger to a fight to the death all day long. They are more tiger fans out there than Lion fans but the lion is simply the better fighter. The Roman script shows that it was surprising to see the tiger win. Every body was betting on Lions and he put his money on the tiger and he won. We don’t know the size of the lion but a Large adult male Lion will kill a bigger tiger any time. Tigers go for the throat which is impossible against an adult lion with mane.
    On the other hand, Lions are used to attacking from all directions. I have scoured the internet looking for a ” tiger kill Lion video to no avail”.

    • Abdullah Guri

      July 18, 2020 at 4:44 am

      Guys This is all stupid every body should know that a tiger can whip a lion, there was one report in a Turkish zoo that a fully grown tiger attacked a fully grown lion and the tiger killed the lion with one paw swipe to the neck so everybody that says the lions mane protects them that is not true because how did the tiger kill it, and tigers are much better in everything than lions for example, Tigers are faster,physically stronger , they have stronger and more muscle than lions, they are more active and have more energy than lions and they have a much stronger bight than lions, a lions bite is 650psi while a tigers bite is measured at 1050psi!

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