Watch a Fearless Honey Badger Climb a Tree to Try to Make a Meal of a Massive Python

Written by Sharon Parry
Updated: November 17, 2023
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When most animals find a massive python lurking in a tree, they would keep a wide berth. This fearless honey badger, however, does the complete opposite. These guys are the ultimate opportunistic predators and even see a huge snake in a tree as an opportunity! Keep scrolling to watch the full video of this fascinating encounter.

Watch the Amazing Footage Below

@topanimals_life #python #honeybadger #pythons #animalsoftiktok #wildanimals #animalworld #tiktokanimals #wildlife #wildlifephotography #animals #animal #wildnature #animalplanet #predator #prey ♬ original sound – TOPANIMALS_LIFE

What Exactly Are Honey Badgers?

Honey badgers look a bit like large skunks.


Honey badgers are regarded as one of the most fearless animals on earth. They are a weasel-like species that are a member of the mustelid family. In reality, most people think they look like a large skunk.

There are actually over 10 different subspecies of honey badger that differ slightly in appearance. Nevertheless, they tend to have long bodies with broad backs and flat heads. They also have short legs and stumpy tails. On their faces, they have small eyes, short muzzles, and tiny ear ridges.

Honey badgers live in dry grassland and forested areas across Africa as well as in parts of Asia, the Middle East, and the Indian subcontinent.

Do Honey Badgers Eat Snakes?

Besides small birds, rodents, lizards, frogs, and turtles, honey badgers also enjoy a nice snake dinner!

©Erwin Niemand/

Yes! Snakes are part of the honey-badger diet. They may get their name from their favorite sweet snack which they steal along with bee larvae but their diet is much wider than that.

They obtain a lot of their calories from animals such as frogs, birds, and rodents. They also eat lizards, turtles, gerbils, and mice. It is quite common for them to eat formidable snakes including rock pythons, cobras, and black mambas.

Whilst honey badgers may prefer meat, they are also willing to eat plant material. You may see them munching on berries, roots, bulbs, and bark and if they come across an insect, they will eat that too!

Honey Badgers and Pythons

Burmese Python in a Tree

Pythons can often be found hanging out in trees, either to escape predators or catch prey.

©Heiko Kiera/

There are several reports of honey badger and python encounters and it is usually the honey badger that wins. There is footage of them outwitting a sizable Southern African rock python and another of them securing a python meal before having to protect it from a jackal.

These guys have zero respect for any other animal. Having said that, they are themselves hunted by leopards, crocodiles, and hyenas!

Is it Normal Behavior for a Honey Badger to Pursue a Snake Up a Tree?

While it may not happen often, honey badgers can climb trees in pursuit of prey. They are quite capable climbers with their strong claws, combined with their infamous tenacity. Honey badgers have been observed climbing trees for two reasons–to escape danger or in search of prey.  If a honey badger wants a meal bad enough, climbing a tree would be within the realm of possibility.

Honey badgers will also react if they sense danger. This particular one could have viewed the python as a threat and decided to go on the offensive. These tough critters are known to challenge (and consume) venomous snakes like cobras. Pythons are not venomous, but the honey badger would have to contend with possible constriction if the python got hold of it. It’s anyone’s guess as to how the video’s story ended!

Why Are Honey Badgers So Tough?

Honey badgers aren’t afraid of anything – including pythons, jackals, and lions!

©Dirk Theron/

You may have seen videos of honey badgers fighting everything from lions to pythons – these relentless little creatures always seem to come out on top! Despite their small size – honey badgers are considered to be one of the toughest animals on the planet with an attitude to match. Brave to a fault, these animals are equipped with powerful teeth and jaws, sharp claws, and loose, thick, skin that enables them to turn around to face whatever is biting it!

As strange as it may seem – honey badgers dine on snakes – and they don’t care if it is the most venomous snake on the earth – they will eat it. Honey badgers eat puff adders and black mambas – some of Africa’s most deadly reptiles – regularly. They have developed immunity to venom – and there are cases of these fierce creatures receiving enough snake venom to kill two oxen with no adverse effect! Bee stings and scorpion stings don’t bother them either. No wonder the honey badger isn’t afraid of anything!

The photo featured at the top of this post is © LM Gray/

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About the Author

Dr Sharon Parry is a writer at A-Z animals where her primary focus is on dogs, animal behavior, and research. Sharon holds a PhD from Leeds University, UK which she earned in 1998 and has been working as a science writer for the last 15 years. A resident of Wales, UK, Sharon loves taking care of her spaniel named Dexter and hiking around coastlines and mountains.

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