Animal Bite Force

I just watched a recorded special from the National Geographic Chanel called “Dangerous Encounters: Bite Force”. It’s the second time I’ve watched it but it was still great. The guy went around recording the bite force in pounds of different animals. I wrote down the results…

127: Human
317: Wild Dog (African)
328: Domestic Dog (Rottweiler)
691: Lion
669: Shark (Great White)
1000: Hyena
1004: Turtle (Alligator Snapping):
2500: Crocodile

For many of these results in the wild, it probably wasn’t the strongest they could be. For example, the strongest reading for the African Wild Dogs was when they were fighting with each other, not all focused on biting down. The hyena reading was actually 600 lbs on a juvenile, but there’s been other recordings around 1000. The Great White Shark was not in “attack mode”. The Lion wasn’t attacking either. And the Croc was actually tired because they wrestled him for about an hour (he was 14 feet long!). In other words, for the wild animals, these were actual recordings but probably conservative to what they can really do!

I love this stuff. I need some dinner.

UPDATE: During dinner I watched an episode of Dirty Jobs when Mike Rowe went to a snake farm. They said on there that the American Alligator has the strongest bite force. So I went online and found an article saying the same thing. Now I know there is a difference between a crocodile and an alligator, but I don’t know about the bite force. Prolly’bout the same. Either way, I don’t wanna stick my hand near one!

Be Sociable, Share!
  • paul

    After eight days and testing 60 subjects, Erickson and Vliet recorded a bite with 2,125 pounds of force from a 665-pound, 12-foot American alligator. That’s a force equal to the weight of a small pickup truck. The biting force of smaller alligators and crocodiles were basically proportional to their size,

  • Has anyone ever tested the bite force of a hippopotamus? I have heard that even crocs stay clear of them

  • Jeremy

    Okay, now we just have to convert this to units that aren't obsolete.

    Human: 565N
    Wild dog: 1410N
    Domestic Dog: 1459N
    Lion: 3074N
    Shark: 2976N
    Hyena: 4448N
    Turtle: 4466N
    Crocodile: 11121N

    It's fairly impressive that a tired crocodile still has 20 times the bite force of a human, but it's a reptile. It's going to be stronger than any mammal, especially a mammal that doesn't hunt with its teeth.

  • KingPoppa1

    Actually…the Most Powerful Bite Force Championship goes to an animal I haven't even seen on these lists. The Tazmanian Devil has the most powerful bite force of any living animal on earth.

  • KingPoppa1

    Actually…the Most Powerful Bite Force Championship goes to an animal I haven't even seen on these lists. The Tazmanian Devil has the most powerful bite force of any living animal on earth.

  • mikeheerema

    Finally someone mentions the Tazmanian Devil. Apparently no one can agree on the strongest living bite force, because one site says it's an Alligator, another says it's the Great White Shark, another the Crocodile. And yet the Taz. Devil bites over 5,000 psi, which is twice your listed crocodile bite.

  • albert mendoza

    a healthy grey wolf's defensive bite, not attack mode either, was measured at more than 400 lbs.

  • spartiatis

    human 127 and malinua shepherd 175. IT DOEST MAKE SENSE. a domestic cat can break a bone but a human can't

  • spartiatis

    pound per pound yes, but come on it's only 8 kilos. about 300 ppsi

  • Tdavismann

    I think that the 5000psi was an approximation of what the t.devil would be capable of if it were the size of a large alligator. like spart said, the t.devil is the strongest proportionally.

  • mikeheerema

    That 5,000 psi bite force was supposedly scientifically measured with an
    instrument, *not* an estimation or extrapolation based on size! There would
    be no point in that, since an ant might have a stronger bite force in
    proportion to its size.

  • Billfomidaho

    No matter how small an animal is doesn't affect its bite force. The bite force is measured in an equal way for all animals. Say the Tasmanian devil has a 5 sq. inch mouth. That's about 25000 pounds of total force. Now if a croc has a 30 sq. inch mouth thats a total of 75000 pounds of total force. (those mouth sizes are random) Overall the croc has more force but on a smaller scale the devil beats it.

  • Natalie

    Did the guy conducting these measurements place the sensor in the same place of the mouth each time?? It's an actual rule of physics that the bite force at the back of the mouth will be incredibly stronger than in the front of the mouth. That's why with humans – our chewing teeth are are in the back of the mouth.

  • Tsiamp

    Wolves are not included in that list above, they should be, because they are one the few wild animals that are able to confront any other wild animal such as a tiger or a lion. Wolves may reach a weight of 86 kg/s and 2 meters long, which makes them powerful enough to beat any animal. Dogs however, provided of their ancestry with wolves, they have been able to evolve in such sizes that may compete with large apex predators such as bears, lynx and bulls. Dogs have been incuded in this list where they show that a Rottweiler has that much bite force and may sometimes be able of more than just 328.

  • baburi

    where is the tiger??