With hunting being so dangerous, how do predetor animals survive? I’ve seen many videos/photos of for example lions being killed or atleast hurt while hunting… How can they survive when they have to take such a risk so often just to eat?

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With hunting being so dangerous, how do predetor animals survive? I’ve seen many videos/photos of for example lions being killed or atleast hurt while hunting… How can they survive when they have to take such a risk so often just to eat?

In: Biology

That’s why you see in all those documentaries, that animals will try to pick off weaker/sick animals, rather than attack a strong, healthy animal.

For the same reason humans continue to drive cars. It is dangerous, but not so dangerous that the costs outweigh the benefits.

If the number of animals being hurt while attempting to prey is high enough, the species will either die out or it will be forced onto another diet. Palm civets, for example, are relatives of cats that in the distant past used to be predators, but have since adapted to be almost entirely herbivorous. So at some point in the past, one of their ancestors was living in an environment where the costs and risks of preying on other animals were too high, and those felines just started to eat plants instead.

They’re picky about what they prey on, typically.

They’ll pick off a sick, old, injured, or juvenile prey animal when they can, which is less risky than a healthy adult in their prime.

While there are cases of predator being severely injured in the process of taking down prey, this is the exception, not the rule, because of how careful they typically are.

1. You’re seeing the most sensationalist videos of animals hunting. Most of the time, the predator either fails, or doesn’t get hurt.

2. Apex predators typically live longer than their prey, so hunting can’t be more dangerous than being hunted.

They not only survive, they thrive. At least the ones who’s ecosystems are unsullied enough to provide adequate prey. Sure, weaker hunters die off because they either get injured during the hunt or otherwise fail to catch their prey, but strong hunters survive and pass on the genes that enable them to become strong hunters. This is the essence of survival of the fittest. The fittest take calculated risks constantly, and far more often than not come out on top.