Watch A Rhino With The Biggest Horn You’ve Ever Seen Terrify A Sleeping Lion

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Written by Sharon Parry

Updated: November 10, 2023

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Large rhino
Pornchanok Anukoolprasert/

You can’t blame these two lions for leaping up and running away. Most creatures would do the same if they spotted a rhino as big as this one trundling toward them. As the startled lions jump to their feet, the rhino accelerates toward them, showing off its amazing horn. As the video at the bottom of this page shows, lions are clever enough to know when it is safer to run away than to stand and fight.

Do Lions Hunt Rhinos?

Lions are large carnivores and need a lot of protein. In Africa, they have a wide variety of prey but tend to target medium to large ungulates. This would include zebra, impala, and buffalo. A single lion is able to take down an animal twice their weight but rhinos would be a huge challenge. The very largest male lions could reach 600 pounds in weight which is nothing in comparison with a rhino which can reach 5,000 pounds!

There are some isolated reports of lions attacking rhinos but they were considered to be more of a test of strength and intimidation rather than a serious hunt for prey. These confrontations may also be carried out by younger lions who do not have the experience to know better. A lion can get very badly hurt or even killed by a charging rhino so these guys are sensible to run away.

Lion Buffalo Attack

An adult lion takes down an animal twice their weight

How Fast Can Rhinos Move?

These lions manage to get away quite easily and a lion can reach 37 mph in short bursts. However, we see the rhinos trotting towards them and rhinos are not as slow as you may think!

White rhinos have a walking speed of around 2.5 mph. You would see them walking at this speed as they wandered towards a water hole, for example. Their trotting speed, which they would reach when escaping a threat, can reach 18 mph and they can maintain it for a couple of miles. They have an impressive galloping speed of 24.8 mph and this can only be sustained for short distances. The rhino only runs this fast when they are provoked.

In this clip, as soon as the lions make a run for it the rhinos come to an abrupt halt!

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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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