Elephants Dominate First-Ever Cross-Species Eating Competition

Coney Island, NY – Three Asian elephants beat three Major League Eaters in the first-ever fully sanctioned cross-species eating contest today (Friday July 3, 2009) by consuming 505 hot dog buns to the humans 143 buns at the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey® at THE CONEY ISLAND BOOM A RING, in Coney Island, Brooklyn.


The event was a six-minute hot dog bun-eating competition, held in cooperation with Nathan’s Famous, that featured three Ringling Bros.® Asian elephants and three Major League Eaters. The human eaters will compete on July 4 in the Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog-Eating Contest, a holiday tradition that attracts worldwide attention.

The elephants -- Bunny, 42, Susie, 46, and Minnie, 48 – competed against Juliet Lee, 43, Gravy Brown, 30, and Eric “Badlands” Booker, 40. Collectively, the elephants weighed approximately 9 tons while the humans weighed just shy of 600 pounds.

“This contest had significant implications for inter-species relations,” said George Shea, Chairman of Major League Eating “If the humans had won it would have shown that we are unbeatable in this sport, but the elephants have significantly enhanced their stature in the animal kingdom with this win. Humans are facing a rebuilding year.”

“Eating approximately 150-200 pounds of fruits, vegetables, hay, grain and bread daily is average for meeting an elephant’s nutritional needs,” said Janice Aria, Director of Animal Stewardship, Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey. “Asian elephants enjoy eating bread and they can typically eat a foot long loaf of bread in 1.6 seconds. Ringling Bros. always had strong confidence that the elephants were going to be victorious.”