Can Ostrich Kill a Lion?

Lion vs ostrich? The odds are the lion is likely going to win and feast at this birdy breakfast buffet. Though the ostrich is a bird, its strength and fighting ability should not be underestimated. It is capable of giving a tough time to any predators.

This formidable, feathered foe with those “killer legs” delivers solid kicks, packing more than 400Psi per strike.

Such a deadly blow can indeed be lethal to apex predators. With ostrich muscular legs, kick force, and deadly claw, an ostrich can defend itself quite efficiently.

Can Ostrich Kill a Lion?

Though no such authentic case of an ostrich killing a lion has been reported yet, based on theoretical implication, an ostrich has enough power to kill a lion.

They are intelligent, equipped with powerful legs, and can very well protect themselves from hyenas, crocodiles, cheetahs, lions, etc.

They do not seek or hunt attackers but can definitely scare them away with their powerful kicks. It is not easy for a lion to tackle ostrich, therefore, often many predators join hands to hunt.

According to research, Adult male ostriches weigh between 140 kg to 145 kg and run at a speed of 70km/hour. Any animal of that size and speed can be a threat.

Though these dimensions vary for different animals, it is safe to say that typically, ostriches are heavier and faster, therefore, have the advantage of high speed and size.

When it comes to chasing, the ostrich is a clear winner as it can cover over 16 feet in a single stride, whereas, a lion can only cover 4 feet. Read Ostrich Quotes

Ostrich Vs Lion

If the ostrich and lion ever come face to face, the ostrich is likely going to run away and hide in a safe haven.

At first glance, it seems highly unlikely that an ostrich can beat the savanna’s deadliest predators.

Lions attack the prey by breaking their neck or through suffocation. The long, thin neck of the lion is easier and quite vulnerable for a lion to get a hold of it. However, ostriches are dangerous against their predators.

It is not common for lions to hunt ostriches as they are a bit slow to catch them. They usually go after zebras, antelopes, buffaloes, young rhinos, and elephants.

Though ostriches are not the usual prey animals of lions, it does not mean that lions will never hunt ostriches. Lions have a large appetite and are not very picky when it comes to the meat type.

Given the opportunity, lions will hunt ostriches for their delicious meat. Being sneaky hunters and scavengers, lions usually hunt ostriches when they can stay out of sight long enough to get close to attack without the ostrich knowing.

The moment the ostrich realizes it, it is already too late. Lions usually take down ostriches and other animals with their quick wit and clever hunting strategies. Read Why Do Ostriches Dance?

The size of the animal is not what matters always to the lion but the hunting method.

Can an Ostrich Outrun a Lion?

A fight can also be won by avoiding it in the first place. Most animals respond with violence only when there is no other way out. One of the reasons why lions do not actively hunt ostriches is because of their high speed.

Ostriches can sprint at a speed of 70 km/hours and also sustain an almost similar speed over long distances.

Lions have a top speed of 80km/hours, however, they tire quickly and can only maintain their highest speed for short period.

So, lions have to get close before the chase begins. If the ostrich can sense the presence of a predator, their superior stomach will allow them to escape.

It is a game of luck in these life-death scenarios that play out each day in the wild. So, it is a yes or no answer to whether ostriches can outrun lions or not.

Can Lion Kill Ostrich?

This question can be answered with certainty, yes, lions can kill ostriches. We have near heard of ostriches killing lions, however, there are many authentic cases of lions preying on ostriches.

They mostly go after the young ones, old, or injured ostriches that are easier to handle. Lions are clever hunters and often emerge as winners when hunting large animals, that too, with no serious injuries.

Will an Ostrich Fight with a Lion?

No, they do not pick up fights and are quite scared of this lethal predator. Ostrich is not a predator and lacks hunting instincts and the courage to fight a lion.

Ostrich will either run away or try to hide as this intelligent bird knows, fighting the lion is a waste of time and energy.


In an ostrich vs lion battle, the lion will most likely win. However, time, luck, ground situation, and chances also determine who is going to be a winner between these two animals.

  • Hi, I am Talon Juper, a passionate farmer, and Livestock Expert. I have done my graduation in Agriculture and Animal breeding. Relevant to Farm Desire as a research writer and data recorder.

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