Hungry fish

While I’m sure you’ve all seen the spectacular beaching behaviour of predatory killer whales, Orcinus, and dolphins, Tursiops, here’s a report of similar behaviour from a fish a little closer to home. It seems that catfish, Siluris glanis, have recently learnt to snatch and eat pigeons from the riverbank.

The proof of the matter is shown in this picture:


You can see unsuspecting pigeons resting on the riverbank and predatory catfish lurking nearby. Looking closely at the smaller images reveals a successful bird catch.

Interestingly catfish do not display this behaviour in their natural range and so it may represent a fascinating adaptation to the new environment. Perhaps there are not enough fish to eat in these rivers or maybe catfish have simply developed a taste for pigeon? Either way, behavioural adaptation in this species may have implications for the ecological functioning of this riparian environment.

The paper is available in PLoS ONE:



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