King Cobra vs Grizzly Bear: Who Would Win in a Fight?

Written by Kyle Glatz
Updated: March 4, 2023
Share on:


With the rise of apex predators in a particular area of the world, it’s sometimes fun to imagine fights between two animals that could never meet in real life. For example, a king cobra vs. grizzly bear fight would see one of the deadliest snakes in the world fighting against one of the most powerful, aggressive mammals in existence!

We’re going to take a close look at each animal. We’ll show you what separates the king cobra from the grizzly bear and what advantages one animal has over the other. By the time we’ve finished our comparison, we’ll know exactly which creature will win this fight!

Comparing a King Cobra and a Grizzly Bear

Grizzly bears have a very large size.
King CobraGrizzly Bear
SizeWeight: 10lbs-15lbs
Length: 12ft-19ft
Weight: 400lbs-700lbs
Length: 7ft-10ft
Height: 3ft-4ft at the shoulder
Speed and Movement Type– 12 mph
– Slithering along the ground
– 35 mph  
Attacking Method– Will lift the front of its body several feet from the ground and then strike, allowing it to deliver venom in the vital areas
– 0.5in fangs
Long fangs deliver up to 1000mg of venom
– A single bite can kill 11 humans
975 PSI bite
– 42 teeth that measure about 1 inch in length
– Strong bites, vicious shaking attacks
– 4-inch claws – Powerful swipe attacks  
Defenses– Large size
– Threat display that includes hood spread, hissing, and drawing itself up several feet
– Thick skin
– Large size
– Stands on hind paws for threat display
Predatory Behavior– Ambush predator– Opportunistic predators
– Scavengers

What Are Key Differences Between a King Cobra and a Grizzly Bear?

What do grizzly bears eat - eating a salmon

Grizzly bears are aggressive and powerful mammals.


The most significant differences between a king cobra and a grizzly bear are their size, morphology, attacking methods, and location. A king cobra is a limbless reptile from Southeast Asia that can reach 19ft in length and uses powerful neurotoxic venom to kill its foes. Grizzly bears are North American quadrupedal mammals that reach 10 ft in length, weigh 700 lbs, and use powerful bites and claws to kill enemies.

These unique qualities of the animals make it easy to distinguish them and see which has some advantages right away. Yet, we need to look at these animals to determine who wins this fight.

What Are the Key Factors in a Fight Between a King Cobra and a Grizzly Bear?

What Eats Snakes

King cobras use venom to kill their foes, and that will play a big part in this fight.

©Vova Shevchuk/

We’ve already established that size and attacking methods are essential to consider in this battle. However, we need more information to determine which creature has what it takes to kill the other. We will examine other traits like speed, defenses, and how each animal hunts.

With a complete analysis of this information,  we’ll be able to make a very educated guess about how the fight will end.

King Cobra vs Grizzly Bear: Size

Grizzly bears are much larger than king cobras. A grizzly bear usually grows between 400lbs and 700lbs, 7ft-10ft long, and stands 3ft-4ft at the shoulder. The largest grizzly bear weighed about 1,200 lbs and measured 10ft and 6 inches long. These mammals are huge!

The king cobra is a very long snake. In fact, it’s the largest venomous snake in the entire world. On average, this snake will grow between 10ft and 19ft, and it will weigh between 10 lbs and 15 lbs. It is long but light.

The grizzly bear has the size advantage in this case.  

King Cobra vs. Grizzly Bear: Speed and Movement

A grizzly bear is much faster than a king cobra. The grizzly can reach speeds of 35 mph when it runs. Granted that it can’t maintain this speed for long, it can certainly chase down other large creatures like moose and deer.

The king cobra can slither at about 12 mph. This speed is fast enough to spare the king cobra from some attacks. Yet, once a fight starts against the bear, the snake is not fast enough to get away.

The grizzly bear has a speed advantage over the cobra.

King Cobra vs. Grizzly Bear: Attacking Methods

The grizzly bear attacks with its teeth, paws, and claws. This animal has a very powerful bite that it uses to clamp down on foes, shake them, and tear at them with its claws. This mauling technique is highly effective and can take down large and small animals.

King cobras have a more sinister form of attack. They wait for their prey to get close and then ambush them, delivering 1,000mg of incredibly deadly neurotoxic venom. Depending on the size and threat posed by the prey, they may just grab hold of the prey or bite and then let go to wait for it to die.

Both animals have very effective attacking methods, so nobody has an advantage.

King Cobra vs. Grizzly Bear: Physical Defenses

Grizzly bears have fantastic defenses. They have thick skin, a scary threat display, and a large size that sends most animals fleeing. The king cobra is large for a snake, but its true defense is the threat display it uses to scare off foes. Rearing back, spreading its hood, and following the enemy’s movement is enough to scare many enemies off.  

Grizzly bears have better defenses than king cobras.

King Cobra vs. Grizzly Bear: Predation Style

The king cobra is an ambush predator. It waits for the prey to get close while hiding amongst tall grass or waiting by its den. When the animal appears, the king cobra strikes and envenomates their foes. Once that’s done, it will either hang onto its prey until it dies or they’ll leave and wait for the venom to work.

Grizzly bears are opportunistic predators rather than ambush predators. They happen across food sources and then maul them to death. Otherwise, they scavenge for their food.

King cobras have a more effective predation style.

Who Would Win in a Fight Between a King Cobra and a Grizzly Bear?

What Do Grizzly Bears Eat - Berries

Grizzly bears are very fast and they have strong claws.

©Martin Rudlof Photography/

A grizzly bear would win in a fight against a king cobra. To be clear, a king cobra will certainly kill a grizzly bear, but the chances are good that the grizzly bear will kill the snake before expiring. If the two animals met on a neutral ground that disallowed any ambush, the grizzly bear could kill the snake outright.

A strong swat could tear the snake’s head open, and a charging bite could end the fight before it begins. Another potential outcome is that the snake bites the bear first via ambush or while the bear is charging in. King cobras sometimes use dry bites instead of venom.

Even if it did try to envenomate the bear, there is no guarantee that it would get through its skin. If the bear did get envenomated, it still has plenty of time to kill the snake. Humans have lived for days after a cobra bite, even if they can die within an hour. Bears are much larger animals and may have some immunity to snake bites, so they would probably last several hours and retain the ability to fight.

Unless the king cobra bit the grizzly bear and then fled, which is not likely to happen due to the speed difference, there is no path to victory where the cobra bites, kills, and survives. For all these reasons, the grizzly bear will win this battle.  

Who Can Beat the Grizzly?

Grizzly bears are some of the most powerful creatures on this planet. They have immense strength, sharp claws, and teeth that can bring down their prey with ease. But could any other creature match a grizzly bear in a fight?

From land animals to sea creatures, many species have impressive physical attributes or specialized skills that might give them an advantage over grizzly bears in certain situations. For example, lions are known for their hunting tactics and group numbers when taking on large prey like buffalo or antelope. Tigers possess razor-sharp claws and remarkable speed and would be a tough match against a grizzly. Alligators use brute force to overpower foes and could potentially drag a grizzly into the water.

But when it comes down to one-on-one combat between two species, is there anything out there strong enough and smart enough to beat a grizzly bear? This question has been debated for centuries and remains unanswered today. Ultimately, the outcome of such battles would depend on factors like size differences between combatants, terrain type where they meet each other, and fighting strategy used by both sides. All these small details could make the difference between victory or defeat in such hypothetical encounters!

The photo featured at the top of this post is ©

Share on:
About the Author

Kyle Glatz is a writer at A-Z-Animals where his primary focus is on geography and mammals. Kyle has been writing for researching and writing about animals and numerous other topics for 10 years, and he holds a Bachelor's Degree in English and Education from Rowan University. A resident of New Jersey, Kyle enjoys reading, writing, and playing video games.

Thank you for reading! Have some feedback for us? Contact the AZ Animals editorial team.