Wolverines are known to take on wolves, mountain lions and even bears, so can they defeat a hyena in a fight?
Wolverine vs Hyena: Size
The wolverine is the largest species in the mustelid family, reaching up to 42 inches in length and weighing around 25 kg. In comparison, spotted hyenas typically measure 34 to 45 inches long and weigh 60 to 190 lbs.
So the wolverine has its compact size and agility on its side. But don’t count the hyena out just yet! What it lacks in bulk, it makes up for in bite force. Pound for pound, hyenas have one of the strongest jaws in the animal kingdom. Their bone-crushing chompers and powerful neck muscles allow them to gorge on every part of a carcass, including teeth and bones.
While the wolverine has size as an advantage, the hyena’s jaws more than make up for it in brute strength.
Wolverine vs Hyena: Speed and Agility
Wolverines are remarkably fast and agile for their stocky size. They can run up to 30 mph in bursts over short distances and are able to climb trees, swim, and even sprint across snowy landscapes. This gives them an edge in tackling prey like deer or elk.
But hyenas are no slouches either. They can reach speeds of up to 37 mph over three miles. Their long, loping stride allows them to keep pace with zebra and antelope. Hyenas are also nimble enough to navigate tight spaces while maintaining speed.
Both animals possess sharp claws for traction. However, the wolverine’s semi-retractable claws and plantigrade posture give it superior mobility and climbing abilities. The hyena’s claws are better suited for digging than scaling trees.
Overall, the wolverine’s more compact frame makes it a shade faster and more agile than the hyena. But the differences are slight and unlikely to sway the outcome of a head-to-head match.
Wolverine vs Hyena: Attack Power
Don’t let the wolverine’s cute, teddy bear-like appearance fool you – this is one vicious mustelid! Wolverines have incredibly strong jaws, anchored by heavy molars that can crush even mammoth bones. Their sharp claws are long and curved, perfect for tearing flesh.
Though wolverines primarily scavenge carrion, they can take down prey much larger than themselves, like caribou or moose. When threatened, they emit guttural growls and won’t back down from any fight. Their ferocity and intensity in battle has earned them the nickname “devil bear.”
Meanwhile, spotted hyenas have one of the most powerful bite forces of any land mammal. Their jaws can splinter heavy bones and chomp through tendons with 1000 pounds of pressure per square inch. Hyenas use their bone-crushing teeth and claws to disembowel prey. They attack in packs to overwhelm even Africa’s mega-herbivores.
Both the wolverine and hyena possess incredibly powerful jaws and sharp claws. But the hyena’s group hunting strategy gives it the advantage. Solo wolverines choose their battles carefully, while hyenas work together to take down large prey through sheer force. The hyena has superior attack power.
Wolverine vs Hyena: Defence
The wolverine has some impressive natural defences. Its thick, wiry coat and loose skin help protect it from bites and make it difficult for predators to latch on. Wolverine fur is highly water-resistant and frost-proof, allowing it to thrive in cold climates.
But a hyena’s defence abilities give it an edge in combat. Hyena hide is tough as rawhide, with coarse fur that’s almost impossible to penetrate. It has incredibly high pain tolerance thanks to thicker trigeminal nerves in the face. Even grievous wounds barely slow a hyena down.
Hyenas also have an evolutionary advantage when it comes to defence. As pack animals, they instinctively guard each other’s back and come to their troop members’ aid. Wolverines are solitary by nature and so can’t fall back on pack-mates for backup.
For both durability and teamwork, hyena defence abilities mean trouble for a lone wolverine attacker.
Wolverine vs Hyena Who Would Win in a Fight
This is one brutal battle between two ferocious foes. The wolverine has size, speed and vicious slashing capability in its favor. There’s good reason why it’s able to drive bears, wolves, and other apex predators away from a carcass. No predator wants to tangle with this skunk bear’s gnashing teeth, tearing claws and attitude.
But the hyena simply can’t be beat when it comes to combat experience. As highly social pack animals, they spend much of their time hunting large, dangerous game across wide swaths of Africa. Hyenas grapple with lethal lions, trample rampaging Cape buffalo, and hold their own against rhinos, hippos and elephants. They are intelligent and skilled at cooperatively bringing down big prey.
While a single hyena could give a wolverine a run for its money, it’s their mob mentality and teamwork that tips the scales definitively in their favor. A pack of hyenas would be tenacious and unrelenting, using baiting, harrying attacks to overwhelm the wolverine through force of numbers. The hyena clan’s unity and cooperative battle strategy would simply overpower a lone wolverine.
In a knock-down, drag-out clash, the hyena’s bone-splintering jaws, tenacious pack-hunting know-how, and superior defensive attributes would ultimately triumph. The hyena emerges bloody but unbowed as the victor. Don’t mess with this apex predator’s turf!