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50 Baboons vs One Leopard

baboon troop attacks leopard
Image by Latest Sightings via YouTube

A baboon troop reverses the prey and predator roles when they attack a leopard with high hopes of a baboon-snack.

While the fierce leopard is often seen as the unchallenged predator, there’s a riveting twist waiting to be unveiled in the world of baboons.

Let’s assess this unexpected encounter where a troop of baboons overthrows a lurking threat, underscoring the unparalleled strength in unity and strategic defense.

Fun Facts About Baboons

  • Facial Expressions: They are known to use more than a dozen distinct facial expressions to communicate with each other.
  • Childcare Community: Female baboons practice ‘aunting.’ They will often babysit and care for another female’s offspring.
  • Ischial Callosities: Baboons have brightly colored and hairless patches on their buttocks called “ischial callosities.” These tough pads provide comfort when sitting on rough surfaces.

The Footage

“Leopard has all-out brawl with 50 baboons: Source: YouTube: Uploaded: Latest Sightings

In the video, a vast troop of baboons brings traffic to a standstill, lounging and ambling carelessly on the roadway. Everything appears peaceful until a sudden wave of panic sweeps through the baboons.

It’s an alarming shift, with viewers left on the edge of their seats, uncertain of the cause. The tension builds until the reason behind the panic reveals itself: a leopard.

The leopard probably sees a sea of snacks before him and launches himself toward an unsuspecting baboon.

However, the sheer strength of unity becomes evident when the entire troop of baboons springs into action and attacks the leopard. With fearless determination, they rally together, confronting the leopard head-on to save their fellow primate.

Strength In Numbers: The Baboons’ Defense Strategy

In the face of imminent danger, the troop of baboons showcased an innate defensive mechanism: the power of unity.

Instead of scattering and allowing the predator an easy catch, they gathered with a fearless determination. Their collaborative defense not only thwarted the leopard’s attack but also underscored the deep-seated bonds of community within the animal kingdom.

It was a gripping reminder that even in the wild, where survival often hinges on the fittest, collective resilience and cooperation can be a species’ most potent weapon against threats.

The Structure of a Baboon Troop

Baboon in High Grass. Image by Jorge Tung via Unsplash

Baboon societies are intricate structures defined by a clear pecking order. Yet another indication of their intelligence.


At the helm, dominant male baboons lead, their positions asserted through displays of strength, vocalizations, and occasionally, skirmishes. These alpha males gain preferential access to mates and food. Just below them, a cadre of other mature males exists, each vying for a chance to climb the dominance ladder.


Parallel to this, females have their own hierarchy, which is matrilineal in nature. Female baboons inherit their social rank from their mothers, leading to well-defined family lines with longstanding statuses. Higher-ranked females enjoy benefits like better grooming partnerships and increased protection for their offspring.

How Relationships Are Maintained

Relationships within the troop are maintained and solidified through grooming, a pivotal social activity that fosters bonds and eases tensions.

Though the hierarchy is rigid, it’s not immutable. Individual baboons can ascend or descend the ladder due to factors like age, health, alliances, or external challenges.

The Power of Unity

Throughout the natural world, many creatures instinctively gather in large groups to fortify their defenses against predators.

One of the most iconic examples is the schooling behavior of fish. When faced with predators like sharks or larger fish, they swim in synchronized, shimmering schools, making it challenging for attackers to single out one individual.

African buffalo, when threatened by lions, form tight groups, often placing calves in the center and adults facing outward in a formidable wall of horns.

buffalo herd
A buffalo herd. safaritravelplus, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

These behaviors underscore a universal truth: in unity, there lies a potent defense. For many species, strength in numbers isn’t just a strategy—it’s a lifeline.

Learn More

YouTube video
“Baboon troops clash over territory,” Source: YouTube, Uploaded: BBC Earth

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Saturday 19th of August 2023

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