A sloth bear exchanging blows with a territorial tiger has gone viral in an extraordinary video.

The footage shows a male tiger approaching a female sloth bear and her young cub in Tadoba National Park located in India. Sloth bears aren’t typically thought of as big fighters, so her reaction against the wild jungle cat was rather surprising. (Be sure to turn up the volume for best viewing.)

According to The Independent, chief naturalist of Bamboo Forest Safari Lodge at Tadoba National Park, Akshay Kumar, witnessed the entire clash transpire, and believes the bear was only acting on her maternal instincts.

Here’s what he said:

“The tiger was cooling itself off in the water when it saw the sloth bear heading to the [body of water] with her cub in search of water.”

“It went after the sloth bear, but she kept charging to protect her cub.”

“The fight carried on for 15 minutes. The tiger was roaring, it was a severe fight.”

Despite the tiger ripping away flesh and sinking its razor sharp teeth into the bear several times, the mother bear manages to chase the tiger away. Not too bad for an insect-eating bear!

Image is a screenshot from the Facebook video

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