A video of a female sloth bear fighting a tiger is going viral after it was filmed in India’s Maharashtra’s Tadoba National Park during an afternoon safari. The two animals began fighting when the sloth bear was approaching a water hole with her young cub to take a drink.
As soon as the tiger saw the bear heading towards the water, he attacked, and the mother bear had to defend her baby. Akshay Kumar, the chief naturalist at Bamboo Forest Safari Lodge, told news outlets the violent fight went on for 15 minutes.
Both animals were injured by the encounter. The young cub ran away during the fight. The fight only ended when the bear backed the tiger into the water.
The sloth bear was lucky. In the video (which was first shared on Facebook by the Bamboo Forest Safari Lodge) it’s clear she was exhausted by the encounter, but was likely saved by her thick hair, which made it difficult for the tiger to get a grip around her neck.
Watch the intense encounter below.