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Food Chain of Evil
aka: Monsters That Eat Other Monsters

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♫ "It's the Circle of strife..." ♪

"At the end there, when I was trying to cut a deal, the ambassador was scared... That's why he wouldn't come to our aid. That's why we're on our own. Because the demons are afraid of what we're hunting."
Mayor Bentham Rudgutter, Perdido Street Station

Humans are the dominant species. We're at the top of the food chain. That means that literally nothing in the world can successfully prey on humans (except maybe other humans). That's part of what makes a lot of monsters scary and badass; they dethrone us from our position of power.

But when you think about it, eating people is kind of old-hat. After a while, you begin to lose track of all the different types of monsters that eat humans. It just becomes a fact of life, so by the time you run into that guy who wants to devour your flesh to add to his own power, you just sort of yawn because it's exactly the same as everything you've seen anywhere ever. So how do you make something distinctive, then? Well, if monsters that eat humans are no longer a threat... what about monsters that eat other monsters? To establish a Food Chain Of Evil, all you have to do is make the last threat the preferred prey of the next one.


This will often result in situations of Horrifying the Horror for the first monster, where it's deathly frightened of the thing now trying to eat him.

Anything which eats monsters that eat humans counts. Basically, this is power tiers established via fictional food chain.

Contrast Elemental Rock–Paper–Scissors and Tactical Rock–Paper–Scissors, where the food chain is circular. When this sort of food chain exists within a species, that's Monstrous Cannibalism.

See also:

  • Always a Bigger Fish: The heroes are saved when the monster gets eaten by a bigger monster.
  • Monster Lord: Also related, but a Monster leader that eats its own kind is distinct from this trope in that it's only one monster, not an entire species that preys on the other one (although it can still count if the Monster Lord is an entire multi-member monster caste unto itself).
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  • Monstrous Cannibalism: When monsters of the same species eat each-other, rather than a separate species devoted to eating them, although there's a lot of overlap.

Not to be confused with carnivores are evil or Villain Pedigree, although there's probably some overlap with the latter.


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    Anime and Manga 
  • Trinity Blood: The Crusniks, who eat vampires. Though three of the four Crusniks to ever exist have been friendly to humanity (to an extent), including the hero Abel Nightroad.
  • JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: The Pillar Men in Part 2 eat the vampires who were the primary antagonists in Part 1.
  • Hellsing: Alucard, while technically a vampire in name, is more of an Eldritch Abomination in vampire's clothing, and his favorite food seems to be the vampires created by the Big Bad.
  • Bleach: The Menos Grande are created when the hunger of a group of Hollows becomes so great that they start feeding on each other, resulting in them merging into a near-mindless skyscraper-sized beast. If one of the constituent personalities can gain control of the others, then continuing to consume other Hollows eventually pushes them across the Bishōnen Line to become the human-like and insanely powerful Vasto Lordes.
  • Neon Genesis Evangelion:
    • Seen when Unit 01 goes berserk and eats Zeruel.
    • Similarly, in Rebuild of Evangelion, Zeruel does this to Unit 00.
  • Devilman features this often, mostly in the first OVA, as the demons will eat each other out of cannibalism.
  • Fullmetal Alchemist has this when Pride eats Gluttony's philosopher's stone.
  • Godannar with the fusion type mimetic beasts trying to "eat" their brethren, although somewhat subverted as it actually makes them more powerful.
  • Getter Robo with New Getter Robo when the giant onis eat smaller members of their kind to gain their intelligence.
  • Cell from Dragon Ball Z needed to hunt down and absorb Dr Gero's other creations to reach his final form.
  • Invoked in Puella Magi Madoka Magica. The series's Monsters of the Week, witches, devour humans and use them to reproduce. The core of a dead witch, a Grief Seed, is the only way for a Puella Magi to replenish their strength, and so they hunt (or, in some cases, even cultivate) witches. One particularly cold girl, Kyouko, even calls it a food chain, with them at the top. As it turns out, Puella Magi are merely the larval forms of witches, and the discarded Grief Seeds are ultimately fuel for their creators. Some fans have even produced population dynamic models.
  • In Violinist of Hameln, Mazoku feed on humans. They can also raise their power by drinking magical blood, which can be from human mages... or other Mazoku. Demon King Chestra is known to eat lesser Mazoku and even planned to eat his own children.
  • Tokyo Ghoul has one in the form of the rare Kakuja mutation, the result of Ghouls that engage in Monstrous Cannibalism one time too many. Incomplete Kakuja such as Kaneki Ken are near-mindless monsters, while the fully-evolved ones such as the One-Eyed Owl and Yoshimura are the strongest and most terrifying Ghouls on record. The legends about the Kakuja are one reason that cannibalism occurs among Ghouls, with those actively seeking to increase their power risking the resulting mental breakdown that goes along with it. Ghouls might eat humans (and occasionally weaker Ghouls), but the Kakuja eat whatever the hell they want and are almost without exception super-predators of incredible power.

    Card Games 
  • Magic: The Gathering: One card mentions an ogre philosopher who believed that one's purpose in life is to climb as high on the food chain as possible; she therefore made a point of feeding only on creatures that prey on intelligent beings, and outright refused to eat vegetarians.

  • Marvel Comics:
    • Tryks hunt down and infect the various species of vampire. They need normal humans to reproduce though. Deacon Frost also tries to become a creature above vampires on the food chain himself but instead gets eaten by one.
    • Galactus was first introduced by showing the Skrulls, some of the most threatening villains the Fantastic Four had faced up until then, terrified of him and doing their best to conceal their home planet so he wouldn't find and eat it.
      • In a later story, Galactus successfully devoured the Skrull homeworld and its inhabitants.
      • Galactus himself was once considered a prospective meal, along with the rest of the universe, for an interdimensional being known as Hunger.
  • Angel: One of the non-canon comic books has Angel deal with the returning threat of a giant tentacle monster that feeds on vampires by sucking out the demon inside of them. Angel wouldn't have a problem with this, except that when the creature reaches its maximum of 3000 demons, they'll all be expelled from its body... in a spirit form that will let them directly possess living humans, instantly turning 3000 people into vampires in one night.
  • Hack/Slash: Tim Seeley once mentioned in an interview that a scrapped storyline would have involved a slasher who preyed solely on vampires.
  • A few Venom stories featured Xenophages, monsters that feed on symbiotes.
  • From Witch Doctor, Penny Dreadful is a cryptophage: a monster whose diet consists entirely of other monsters.
  • In Vampirella vs. Aliens, the Xenomorphs basically fill this role for the vampires. The comic opens with a bunch of Nosferatu being hunted by them, the last of whom tries to fight back by sinking his fangs into an alien. Bad idea.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Blade II: The Reapers feed on vampires. Though they were not above snacking on humans too. The only way to kill them was the sun, as they had a solid bone plate over their heart, and easily healed from a broken neck. They could probably survive decapitation as well; a victim in the middle of turning survived a partial decapitation. After the body was destroyed, the remaining piece was still looking around and blinking with its eye.
  • Subverted in Godzilla 2000. In the climax of the movie, Orga attempts to swallow Godzilla whole. Godzilla uses his atomic breath on its insides and kills it.
  • In Rodan, the titular giant pterosaur is first introduced as a predator that eats the Big Creepy-Crawlies called Meganulon that had previously been the threat in the movie.
  • Marcus from Underworld: Evolution becomes a vampire/lycan hybrid. From this point, he becomes pretty much omnivorous.
  • The Valley of Gwangi: The titular allosaurus eats a styracosaurus and a gallimimus.
  • Planet of the Dinosaurs: The tyrannosaurus rex eats a rhedosaurus while chasing the human characters at one point.
  • Evolution: Mostly at the stage of alien evolution where the meteor crash site resembles the Carboniferous Era.
  • Star Wars Episode I The Phantom Menace: In the subterranean oceans of Naboo, giant sea monsters such as the eel-like Colo Claw Fish and the fish-crustacean hybrid Opee Sea Killer are hunted by an even larger leviathan, the Sando Aqua Monster.
  • The Cosmic Monsters: A giant spider (that somehow changes between a tarantula and a funnel web) catches a cockroach in its web and fights it, eventually winning and wrapping it up.
  • Ghoulies II: The Ghoulie Eater, who does what exactly what his name says and eats all but the Fish Ghoulie.
  • King Kong (2005): The vastatosaurus rex eats a foetodon. This is also heavily used in the game based on the film.
  • Jurassic Park:
    • The T. rex in the first film eats a Gallimimus and a Velociraptor.
    • Jurassic Park III also has this with the notorious scene of the Spinosaurus killing the juvenile Tyrannosaurus.
  • Mega Piranha: The titular monsters feed on each other if one is hurt. The feeding frenzy is so crazy that it ends up causing them to kill each other at the end.
  • Mega Shark Vs Crocosaurus: Mega Shark proceeds to eat Crocosaurus's eggs throughout the movie.
  • Hunting Humans: The main character has a Nightmare Sequence where the fellow Serial Killer who has been hassling him appears as a supernatural creature that preys on infamous murderers.
    "I'm the reason Jack the Ripper was never caught, and I'm the reason you'll never be caught. You're hunting humans, and I'm hunting you!"
  • In Daybreakers, vampires can mutate by drinking their own blood, turning into Subsiders, feral and incredibly dangerous bat/human hybrid monsters. They feed mostly off the blood-drinking but much more human vampires, but will eagerly take human blood too whenever they can get it.
  • In Queen of the Damned, Akasha drinks the blood of vampires and humans alike.

  • Erynis, the protagonist of The One Who Eats Monsters is a goddess of vengeance who is classified as a monster because her powers are chaotic. She exists to punish evil in all its forms, her preferred victims are other monsters, and she eats their hearts after killing them. Erynis has been so successfull in her mission that other supernatural beings named her 'The Implacable One'.
  • Giant spiders in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets fear the basilisk. But even the mighty basilisk is afraid of roosters. And roosters fear humans, which fear giant spiders, which fear basilisks, which fear roosters...
  • In "The Shadow Out of Time" by H. P. Lovecraft, the Great Race of Yith, for all their power and clear superiority, seem terrified of the half-material entities sealed beneath the earth.
  • Roger Zelazny:
    • In "Dayblood", the titular Dayblood feed on vampires. The only Dayblood present looks (and thinks) like a human and doesn't seem to be particularly evil — more like ruthlessly practical. Interesting that vampires know at least some weaknesses of the Dayblood and use appropriate protections against them.
    • Itself Surprised, set in Fred Saberhagen's Berserker series, focuses on the discovery of an inactive anti-Berserker Berserker, unleashed long ago by the Red Race shortly before the Builders' Berserkers wiped them out.
  • Perdido Street Station: The main issue driving the plot is the presence of the slake moths, giant dream- and mind-eating moths that scare the living crap out of devils. In fact, the slake moths are even shown to have eaten a vampire at one point in the book. And these slake moths are only halfway up the foodchain in their homeland. It's that kind of world.
  • I Am Legend: Inverted in the original novel. The significance of the title is that, to the living, sapient vampires rebuilding civilization, Robert Neville is a terrifying monster who can hunt them during the day.
  • Clickers: The titular three-foot-long man-eating crabs are only on shore in the first place because they're fleeing from seven-foot-tall Fish People.
  • In Barbara Hambly's Those Who Hunt the Night, someone, or something appears to be hunting the vampires of London and draining all of their blood.
  • The Mist: The various monsters have a clear food chain, along with eating any humans they come across.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Big Wolf on Campus had a variation in an episode about vampires that can only eat werewolves.
  • Species 8472 in Star Trek: Voyager are Borg biters. They see our entire galaxy as impure. They plan on killing everything else after they finish chowing down on the Borg.
  • On Supernatural, there are creatures that gain power by consuming the blood of demons. Sam is one of them.
  • The Ultra Series does this occasionally with its kaiju.
    • Return of Ultraman: The whip-armed Gudon is Twin Tail's natural predator, and their rivalry proves so intense that when Ultraman Jack stepped in to kill them both, he didn't stand a chance in the three-way battle. This rivalry is repeated in Ultraman Mebius where the two's battle is interrupted by the Mebius example below.
    • Ultraman Taro: In episode 17, bug-like monsters called Kemujira appear after being awoken by a volcanic eruption, ZAT deals with them as is typical, but then the real threat emerges in the form of their predator Birdon, who not only devours the Kemujira, but kills Ultraman Taro.
    • Ultraman 80: In episode 28, the vicious Zakira attempts this with an infant Baru (a species of Gentle Giant kaiju that is its natural prey) that UGM was taking care of, but fails.
    • Ultraman Max: The ice-breathing Lagoras is the mortal enemy of the fire-breathing Grangon, and the former hunts for the latter to consume its molten core to become Evolved Lagoras, which combines the powers of both into a far more dangerous attack.
    • Ultraman Mebius: Bogal and her spawn, the Lesser Bogals, are basically mouths with a body. Their presence calls forth other kaiju from the depths of space or their tombs in the earth to be unwillingly consumed. Worse still, the Bogals use the energy gained from meals to evolve in power and appearance. Oh yeah, they also cannibalize their dead for the same effect.
  • Stargate Atlantis
    • The Wraith are a terrifying race of lifeforce vampires who hunt, herd, and generally rule over humanity as a food source. However, when Lt Ford was being fed upon, the process was interrupted and he discovered that the Wraith, in order to allow them feed longer, inject their victims with a powerful stimulant that makes the victim stronger. Cue Ford and some other Wraith survivors around the galaxy forming a group that hunts the wraith, harvesting their corpses for more sweet, sweet Psycho Serum
    • There are also the Asurans: machines created by the Ancients to combat the Wraith. When the Asurans are activated, they become a much bigger threat than the Wraith when they decide to kill the Wraith by eliminating their food source...humans. Until they are dealt with, of course.
  • In an early episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, a particularly fearsome vampire is sent running at the sight of the She-Mantis, who wasn't even in her true form at the time.
  • The Vampire Diaries features Mikael, an ancient vampire who hunts other vampires because he doesn't drink the blood of the living, only other vampires.
  • River Monsters is a documentary about catching the scariest fresh water fish, not just the man-eaters, but the things that eat them. Usually done on a catch and release basis, but sometimes people do end up eating them. Note: this is a documentary, so the fish that qualify are also Real Life examples.
  • Community, "Horror Fiction In Seven Spooky Steps": "I am a werewolf who feeds on selfish vampires."

    Tabletop Games 
  • Vampire: The Masquerade:
    • Any vampire of a sufficiently low generation can develop the Elder's Thirst: they can only feed on other vampires. Their capacity for holding blood can be ten times that of a neonate, so when they're running on empty it takes a lot to fill them up. Luckily for them, vampire blood is much more filling. Most vampires in the setting live in fear of Gehenna, when the Antediluvians will rise from torpor to devour their offspring. Some Elder vampires invoke this trope by specifically creating coteries of neonates (new vampires) to go out and fill themselves up with human blood, so their Sire can then fill up on vampire blood. Not enforced in the rules per se, but a very creepy and squicky piece of fluff.
    • Also, humans can be empowered somewhat by feeding them vampire blood — but become enslaved to their donor. Sometimes they decide to go independent and find their own supplies. This is Vlad the Impaler's backstory. He was never a blood thrall, but, before he was Embraced himself, he fed on captured Tzimisce and shared the blood with loyal elite troops, thereby establishing himself higher on the food chain than the clan that had been terrorizing so many similar small European kingdoms.
  • In Vampire: The Requiem, similar examples to the above exist:
    • Any vampire with Blood Potency 7 can only feed if they're willing to drink the blood of another vampire. There are drawbacks: addiction and the risk of being mind controlled by the victim. They can also get addicted to soul-eating other vampires through diablerie. Usually, any vamp getting this high a Blood Potency either ate his way up or existed for a very long time, both of which tend to make you extremely powerful. In the case of the former, they also tend to be quite psychotic due to diablerie eating away at your Humanity.
    • Supplements have featured both the Macellarius, who gain the ability to truly digest food and a gourmand's desire for strange flesh, and the Noctuku who have a compulsion to eat the flesh of their victims as well as drink their blood, despite it providing no benefit to them — it's more a dominance thing.
    • As in Masquerade, ghouls — humans given vampiric abilities by addicting them to vitae (vampire blood) — can sometimes go rogue and turn to hunting vampires to make them into food without having to slave for them. The Mythologies splat actually introduces the Phanariot, which are a ghoul strain that has managed to become immune to the Blood Bond and so freely preys upon vampires.
    • Naturally, vampires can suck blood from the various other supernatural splats. In first edition, this isn't always a good idea — Urathra blood has a tendency to provoke Frenzy, for example. The Book of the Dead splat contains a merit that allows vampires to eat ghosts instead of drinking blood. In 2nd edition, the merit Unnatural Affinity exists specifically for the aforementioned too-strong vampires, allowing them to substitute the blood of non-vampire supernaturals for vampire blood.
    • The Edimmu are demonic entities from ancient Mesopotamia, who were created to destroy rival vampires but Turned Against Their Masters. They wiped out The Necrocracy of Babylon; they devour vampire souls, reproducing sevenfold whenever they do; and they're pretty much the Godzilla Threshold to any vampire old enough to know about them.
  • Werewolf: The Forsaken:
    • In the 2nd edition , werewolves got tweaked so that Primal Urge had a similar drawback to Blood Potency above. Hitting Primal Urge 6 means that only the flesh of carnivorous creatures can sustain a werewolf, so if they don't want to starve to death, they need to start eating wolves and the like. Two points of Primal Urge later, and from then on, only the flesh of creatures that produce Essence will do. These big bad wolves can only nourish themselves on the flesh of humans (and by extension mages), spirits, and other werewolves.
    • This is also how spirits often work. Each spirit can eat other spirits that are similar to it (a water spirit eating another water spirit, for instance) or compatible with it (a wolf spirit eating a rabbit spirit), basically making an almost cannibalistic food chain. However, they are also capable of gaining Essence simply from being around the thing they represent.
  • Warhammer 40,000: Arguably the Necrons, the only race in existence with a working game plan to permanently destroy Chaos — a sentient dark side that operates by The Corruption when it isn't taking matters into its own hands. Necrons are the entities that daemons are theoretically scared of, though Daemon players aren't usually scared of Necron players in practice.
  • In Dungeons & Dragons, Bebiliths are demonic spiders whose favorite prey is other demons.
  • Pathfinder:
    • Umbral dragons and cairn linnorms are notable for hunting The Undead as their favored food source. Of the two, umbral dragons prefer to feed on incorporeal undead such as ghosts and specters, while cairn linnorms, which cannot physically interact with ectoplasm, stick to the corporeal kind. That said, both will happily feed on humans if no better meal presents itself.
    • Baomals, ravenous sea monsters resembling giant sea turtles with two snakelike heads, are stated to have been ravenous predators of aboleths in the distant past.
  • GURPS Dragons: One of the backstory options presented for a campaign setting where dragons have overrun a fantasy world is based on the dangers of tampering with such food chains. In this case, dragons normally produce huge numbers of offspring that another species of monster habitually preys on, keeping their numbers very low. Then the dragon-eating monsters are wiped out by humanoids who see them as threats, and, well...

    Video Games 
  • The What Did I Do to Deserve This, My Lord? series is all about creating a food chain ecology for your monsters. Slime molds roll around redistributing nutrients from the soil, the insectoid Omnoms eat the slimes to feed themselves and reproduce, Lizard Men eat Omnoms, and Lizard Men can be devoured by Dragons.
  • In Amnesia: The Dark Descent, the player is stalked by a horrifying monster that can't be confronted or killed, and you spend much of your time running and hiding in terror. About halfway through the game, you wander into a side room and find its dismembered corpse lying in a pile of The Corruption, and realize you have bigger things to worry about.
  • Ratchet & Clank:
    • Amoeboids, and it is pretty much all they do.
    • Ratchet & Clank: Going Commando: The arctic leviathans will eat Y.E.T.I. to restore their health if they are close enough.
  • Dino Crisis 2: Seen when the Tyrannosaurus Scar is defeated by the Giganotosaurus and eaten off-screen.
  • In the first Paper Mario, Tubba Blubba eats Boos.
  • MOTHER 3: If you get into a battle with both a Dung Beetle and a Sand Lizard, the Lizard might eat the Dung Beetle for health. In the Sand Lizard's Battle Memory entry, the game mentions that the Dung Beetles clean up Sand Lizard dung, and, in turn, the Sand Lizards eat them.
  • Metroid Fusion: The lynchpin of the plot. Metroids eat X Parasites (and, according to the manga, were specifically engineered to do so by the Chozo) and, by killing all the Metroids in SR388, Samus disrupted the natural balance of the ecosystem, resulting in the X Parasites reproducing unchecked. This is, unsurprisingly, a Bad Thing.
  • Metro 2033: You should've guessed something was up when you ran into a room full of corpses that haven't been looted and that the radioactive mutants that were chasing moments before you refuse to enter. Outside of the Metro itself, the demons—flying mutants apparently descended from tigers—are the apex predator on the surface and can be seen carrying off hapless monsters more than once.
  • In Nightmare Creatures you spend most of the game facing the tough and somewhat dangerous Pepys' Monsters (sort of large humanoid golems with extra limbs and heads). After a certain level you'll start meeting Giant Spider monsters, who has webbed and eaten one of said Pepys Monsters.
  • In the second Splatterhouse game at the end of the first level you see three mooks progressively devoured by a larger creature beyond a door, quickly revealed to be the boss of the level.
  • Halo:
    • In the original trilogy, the Covenant are a collection of highly advanced alien species who look to be the main reason why humanity's about to go extinct... that is, until the Flood are released. After that, the Flood start assimilating both Covenant and humans into their ranks and you start to wish you just had the Covenant to face again.
    • In Halo 5: Guardians, it becomes clear that the Covenant remnant are small fry compared to the various Forerunner machines coming out of hiding and being controlled by Cortana and the Warden Eternal.
  • In the Soul Reaver series, the initial protagonist Raziel begins by being transformed from a vampire to a wraith which feeds on the souls of vampires.
  • In the Web Game Amorphous+, the opponents you face are Glooples, a number of which can engulf the player or eat him. Then there's the Amalgam, who like its namesake suggests can absorb other Glooples to become stronger. Of course, the Amalgam can engulf the player too if they're not careful.
  • In Metal Slug 6, the Mars People (from 2/X and 3) make a return, allied again with General Morden and his soldiers. Then they're attacked by the Venusians, who not only make short work of Morden's soldiers, but also literally eat the Mars People for breakfast.
  • In Dragon Age: Origins – Awakening, the Children are introduced devouring normal Darkspawn and instantly transforming into bigger and more monstrous forms.
  • Chimera Beast: The Villain Protagonist Eater is on both ends of this trope. In the final level, it encounters smaller Eaters that it can consume and assimilate the abilities of. The final boss on the other hand is an even larger Eater that's trying to consume the player.
  • In Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines, even Nines, the badass leader of the Anarchs vampires, is terrified of werewolves. The one you have to deal with in Griffith Park near the endgame can kill you in four or five hits, and shrugs off even your most powerful weapons — you need to find a special way to kill it.
  • In Chrono Trigger, if you fight against Edible Frogs and a Fangtooth, the Fangtooth eats one Edible Frog every time it is hurt to restore its health.
  • RuneScape: Humans are fed on by Vampyres, but Vampyres fear the giant spiders known as Araxytes.
  • In Insaniquarium, Guppies are your basic fish that eats food pellets and drop coins. Shortly after you get introduced to Carnivores, which eat baby Guppies, but drop the more valuable diamonds. Much later, you meet the large and menacing Ultravores, which eat Carnivores and drop the extremely valuable treasure chests.
  • In Dungeon Munchies, the numerous wild monsters in the dungeon try to eat your zombie protagonist, as rotting human flesh is a delicious and nutritious food source for them. In turn, your protagonist hunts down and cooks these wild monsters to satisfy his own supernatural hunger, and power himself up to fight stronger beasts.

    Web Comics 

    Web Original 

    Western Animation 
  • In The Snorks, the main characters had to deal with a predatory species called Snork Eaters once in a while, but in one episode they introduced another character who was a Snork Eater Eater.
  • An episode of Futurama deals with a "Sub-Sewer Mutant" that the regular Sewer Mutants fear. They try to laugh it off as just a Sub-Urban Legend. In the non-canon comics, there really are Sub-Sewer Mutants except they act really peaceful, it's only that they mean the opposite of what they say.
  • A Robot Chicken Charlie Brown sketch has a predatory Great Pumpkin being eaten by the Kite Eating Tree
  • One episode of The Real Ghostbusters featured Mee-Krah, an Eldritch Abomination that awoke every thousand years and devoured other ghosts in order to replenish its energy. Unfortunately, it became incredibly hot as it did this, until it eventually reduced the surrounding landscape to a wasteland. The Sahara Desert, the Gobi Desert, and Death Valley were all in their current state because of this demon's previous rampages. The heroes had to stop it before it did the same thing again (and it wasn't easy).
  • In The Amazing World of Gumball, when Gumball and Darwin get lost in the Forest of Doom, they attempt to eat a caterpillar out of hunger. Unable to go through with the deed, they release it and shout encouragement as it slithers away. Suddenly, a fish-bird creature swoops down and grabs the worm. The bird then gets eaten by a tentacled mouse monster, whereas the it gets eaten by a one-eyed gryphon. The gryphon, in turn, gets eaten by a huge moose-like beast. All of this happens in the span of 20 seconds, and Gumball and Darwin stare in silent horror as it goes on.
  • A similar joke appears in Black Dynamite: a white hunter is eaten by a giant white wolf is eaten by a larger white dinosaur is eaten by an even larger spider which Black Dynamite shoots in the head.
    Black Dynamite: That is how you conserve ammo!

    Real Life 
  • Although physically incapable of eating humans, cobras and kraits on the Indian subcontinent do kill them with some frequency. These venomous serpents are also preyed upon by king cobras, which are specialized snake-eaters.
    • The New World version might be the mussarana, a large colubrid that likes to eat rattlesnakes. Of course, it's not particularly dangerous to humans itself, though it is a rather intimidating-looking snake.
    • Mongooses also have been known to kill and eat snakes, though they don't seek snakes out as food.
  • Great white sharks, frequently regarded as ferocious man-eaters, are themselves easy game for orcas. Records have sharks leaving their feeding grounds whenever they felt a killer whale nearby. One recorded example had them go all the way from the mainland U.S. to Hawaii. To put that in perspective, if they went the other way to Kansas, it wouldn't be far enough.
    • While coastal great whites live mostly on marine mammals, their open-water fellows regularly prey on smaller species of shark. This includes other notorious man-eaters like tiger sharks or oceanic whitetips.
  • Siberian tigers hunt bears (black and brown) and keep wolves in their territory at a minimum. Interestingly, of the three the tiger is the least likely to kill humans.
  • Lions are afraid of crocodiles when they are in the water, but if they surprise them on land they will kill and eat them with no problem.
    • While in water, however, crocodiles are afraid of hippos, whose only real enemy are human hunters.
    • Lions tend to go out of their way to kill other predators in the areas they hunt: hyenas can fight back but leopards and cheetah are a bit outmatched and have to avoid them whenever they can.
    • Even lions run for it when African honeybees get riled up, having no means of defense against their highly-aggressive swarms.
  • A certain urban legend holds that the benevolent cellar or daddy-long-legs spider (that long-leggity beastie that lurks in ceiling corners and vibrates when you get too close) has the most potent venom of any spider, but can't bite through human skin. The Food Chain of Evil is one possible explanation: cellar spiders prey on other spiders, including black widows, ergo cellar spiders must be even worse. However, this is untrue, as the daddy-long-legs spider's fangs are perfectly capable of penetrating human skin and their venom is both extremely weak and injected in such small quantities that it has no effect on humans.
  • A subversion; it is widely believed that those insects that look like giant mosquitoes, known as crane flies or mosquito hawks, prey on mosquitoes. This actually isn't true. They actually are incapable of killing other insects as adults and many of them don't even eat.
    • However, mosquitoes of the genus Toxorhynchites, also known as elephant mosquitoes or mosquito eaters, are an example of this trope. Their larvae prey on other aquatic animals, including other mosquito larvae. This also means that adult females of this genus don't need to consume blood, as they get all the protein they need in the larval stage (mosquitoes that feed on blood do so to get protein for making eggs).
  • Doctors are experimenting with using viruses to treat antibiotic resistant bacteria. These viruses are specialized for infecting specific kinds of bacteria and are harmless to human cells. Bacteria can adapt resistances to these viruses, but by doing so lose their resistance to antibiotics.
  • Hominids and early humans used to be eaten rather regularly by extinct Saber Tooth cats, such as Dinofelis and the like. The solution? It seems early human beings killed them off by using spears and probably fire. This wouldn't be Homo neanderthalensis/sapiens however, these people were Homo erectus.
  • There actually are viruses that infect other viruses, which are known as virophages. Normal viruses reproduce by reprogramming cells to make copies of them, but because viruses are not cells, virophages instead reprogram the host virus so it will causes the cells it attacks to produce copies of the virophage instead of itself.
  • The cells of your body are also part of the microscopic food chain. Viruses, bacteria, and other pathogens attack and eat your cells, but your body is protected by phagocytes and other cells of the immune system which eat or kill anything foreign in the body. Sadly they are not the top predator. Human Imunodeficiency Virus attacks immune system cells, causing the body to suffer AIDS.

Alternative Title(s): Sorting Food Chain Of Evil, Eats Vampires, Monsters That Eat Other Monsters


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