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What Eats Wolves? (5 Wolf Predators)

Being apex predators, it’s hard to think of any animal that can hunt and kill wolves. After all, it does play a crucial function in preserving the balance in the wilderness. So, what eats wolves? Well, there are various top animals that hunt and kill them.

These creatures have a higher position in the food chain; therefore, they’re stronger and hunt all the wolf species, like the gray wolf and red wolf in North America.

What Animal Eats Wolves?

Generally, very few creatures actively prey on a wolf pack for food. Unfortunately, this list of wolf predation is relatively small. After all, wolves are powerful animals that can easily defend themselves. 

Most of these animals have the advantage of strength and size over wolves. But this doesn’t mean that they can’t hunt stronger animals.

Some of the creatures that prey on wolves include:


Bears, particularly grizzly and brown bears, have been known to conflict with wolves over food resources. Still, it’s relatively rare for bears to actively hunt and prey on wolves as a primary food source. Wolves are generally more agile and faster than bears and are skilled pack hunters, making them formidable opponents.

However, interactions between bears and wolves can occur in a few different scenarios:

  • Scavenging: Bears are opportunistic feeders and will scavenge wolf-killed carcasses if they come across them. Wolves often make kills of large ungulates like deer or elk, and bears may take advantage of these carcasses, especially if the wolves are temporarily absent from the kill site.
  • Disputes Over Food: Conflict can arise when bears and wolves want to claim the same carcass. In such cases, there can be confrontations between the two species, depending on the bear’s size and aggression and the number of wolves present.
  • Competition for Resources: In areas with limited food resources, such as salmon runs in coastal regions, both bears and wolves may compete for these resources. While bears are more efficient at catching fish, wolves may attempt to scavenge or steal fish from bear caches.

Siberian Tigers

Siberian tigers, also known as Amur tigers, are large carnivores and apex predators in their habitats. While wolves are not a primary food source for Siberian tigers, they have been known to prey on maned wolves when the opportunity arises.

Tigers are known to be opportunistic hunters, and their diet primarily consists of large ungulates like deer, wild boar, and elk. 

However, when they encounter wolves, and the circumstances are favorable for a hunt, they may attempt to kill and consume wolves. This usually occurs when tigers are in need of food and wolves are available as potential prey.

Mountain Lion 

Mountain lions, also known as cougars or pumas, are solitary predators that primarily feed on deer and other ungulates. 

While mountain lions are generally not known to be frequent predators of wolves, there have been occasional documented cases of mountain lions preying on wolves. Mountain lions prey on grey wolves when food is scarce, mainly when food resources are scarce or in areas where both species share habitat.

These interactions between mountain lions and wolves are relatively rare and result from opportunistic predation rather than a regular part of either species’ diet. Both mountain lions and a pack of wolves are skilled hunters in their own right, with their primary prey being different species of animals. 

Wolves are pack hunters and typically target ungulates like deer, elk, and moose, while mountain lions are solitary hunters and prefer to prey on deer and smaller mammals.


Coyotes are generally not known to be significant predators of wolves. Wolves are much larger and more potent than coyotes, and they are also pack hunters, which gives them an advantage in hunting and defending against potential threats.

Coyotes primarily feed on smaller mammals, birds, fruits, and other vegetation. They are opportunistic feeders and tend to avoid direct confrontations with larger and more formidable predators like a wolf.

wolf hunter


In some parts of the world, particularly in the past, humans have hunted and consumed wolves. However, it’s important to note that the practice of eating wolves is relatively uncommon today and is often subject to legal regulations or outright bans.

Historically, in some cultures, gray wolves and arctic wolves were hunted, and their meat was consumed as a source of food. Their meat might have been utilized in regions where wolves were considered a threat to livestock or were hunted as a part of predator control programs. 

However, the consumption of wolf meat is not a widespread or mainstream practice.

Today, in many countries, wolves are protected by Wildlife Service conservation laws, and hunting them is either heavily regulated or prohibited altogether. These regulations are put in place to protect and preserve the wolf population, which has faced significant declines in the past due to hunting and habitat destruction.

What Kills Wolves in the Wild?

Despite being an apex predator, the wolves, particularly wolf pups, face a lot of dangers that can affect their livelihood. Some of the key reasons they lose their lives include accidents, illnesses, and predators. 

Wolves know the animals that prey on them and because of that, they tend to avoid them. In the wild, wolves face several threats and potential causes of mortality, including:

  • Other Wolves: Intraspecific competition, territorial disputes, and conflicts with rival wolf packs can lead to injuries and death among individual wolves.
  • Disease: Wolves can contract various diseases, such as canine distemper, rabies, and mange, which can lead to illness and death.
  • Parasites: Internal and external parasites, such as tapeworms, ticks, and fleas, can affect the health of wolves, including Ethiopian wolf and gray wolf, and potentially lead to death if infestations are severe.
  • Starvation: Wolves may face periods of food scarcity, especially during harsh winters when prey animals are less accessible. Starvation can be a significant threat, particularly for young or old individuals and smaller packs.
  • Human-related Causes: In some regions, human activities can prey on wolves. This includes accidental deaths from vehicle collisions, trapping, and poisoning.
  • Larger Predators: While wolves are apex predators, they can occasionally come into conflict with larger predators, such as grizzly bears and brown bears, over food resources, leading to injuries or fatalities.
  • Environmental Factors: Extreme weather conditions, natural disasters like wildfires, and other environmental factors can impact wolf populations by reducing food availability or directly endangering individuals.
siberian tiger


Wolves are powerful creatures that hunt in packs, and by now you know that there are a number of animals that prey on them. Various huge animals hunt wolves for food, but wolves are not their main source of meal. Some of their popular predators include bears, mountain lions, and Siberian tigers.

Human beings have also played a major role in the reduction of the wolf population worldwide. In fact, some cultures hunt them for food, while most of us attack them when they try to kill our livestock. Luckily, these creatures are currently protected by conservation laws in different parts of the planet.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which creature consumes a wolf?

Wolves are rarely hunted, but on rare occasions, some animals in the wild like Bears, and Siberian tigers hunt them for food.

Can wolves eat other wolves?

Yes, cannibalism isn’t rare among wolves. Wolves tend to cannibalize other pack members who have been killed or died for other reasons.

Are wolves easy prey?

No, as apex predators, even a huge animal will have to work hard to kill a wolf. On top of that, they live and hunt in packs, which makes them quite hard to kill. 

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