How can a human subdue and overpower a full-grown elephant?

Answer by Rory Young:

Absolutely not.

The weight of the trunk alone is as much a large man, with one big difference; the trunk is made up of 98% skeletal muscle whilst a whole man is made up of only 42% skeletal muscle.

However, for arguments sake let's look at whether men have ever managed to subdue elephants using hand held bladed-weapons?

Well, yes, they have.

The Shangaan people of South-Eastern Zimbabwe would sneak up on elephants and ham-string them by slicing the Achilles-tendon of one hind leg. I'm not sure how this was done quickly enough as elephant can turn very fast but there are records of it happening.

Once an elephant has one leg incapacitated it cannot go anywhere. Therefore they could just wait for it to begin starving, which happens within a matter of days as they need to eat 22 hours a day normally and over a wide area to get the nutrients they need. They would then spear it numerous times causing it to bleed to death.

Apparently many of them died in these attempts.

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4 thoughts on “How can a human subdue and overpower a full-grown elephant?

    • I agree 100%. It is just as cruel as the poisoning and death from sepsis after wounding. Many more elephants die slowly and painfully after being wounded by poachers than die directly from the gun shot.

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