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Jan 11 2014

Vengeance is mine, saith the teleost

This is brilliant: a fish that catches birds on the wing. That takes some impressive calculation to be able to snatch a flitting swallow out of the air.

Now…does anyone have any video of a fish catching a cat?

34 comments

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  1. 1
    Inaji

    Wow. That was something.
     
    We used to have a cat that liked to sit on the edge of the indoor koi pond, dipping his paw in the water to swipe at the koi. That stopped when Guin, our largest koi at the time (around 28″) sucked his paw in his mouth and yanked him in the water. Stopped that behaviour immediately.

  2. 2
    chigau (違う)

    I can’t see this video on my iPad.

  3. 3
    Inaji

    I just followed the link and aaauuuughh, the teeth!

  4. 4
    ChasCPeterson

    does anyone have any video of a fish catching a cat?

    you’re welcome

    (cat’s name is Jonah)

  5. 5
    Trebuchet

    @3: Yeah! I’ve seen an episode or two of River Monsters with Jeremy Wade catching those. Bigger ones at that!

    @4: We’ve got a kitty or two that needs one of those.

  6. 6
    Sunday Afternoon

    Was that an African swallow?

  7. 7
    rturpin

    That’s just wrong.

  8. 8
    whiskytangofoxtrot

    The fish would have to have an extremely accurate perception of the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow.

  9. 9
    What a Maroon, el papa ateo

    @Sunday Afternoon,

    Hard to say, but it was clearly fully laden.

  10. 10
    Rich Woods

    Now…does anyone have any video of a fish catching a cat?

    Are you looking for somewhere to relocate your house guest?

  11. 11
    Nemo

    I’ve seen an insect (a mantis) catching a mouse… that was enough wrongness.

  12. 12
    David Marjanović

    I just followed the link and aaauuuughh, the teeth!

    :-) I guessed the species!

    I’ve seen an insect (a mantis) catching a mouse… that was enough wrongness.

    All seconded. At the end of that documentary, though, a mantis was eaten by a hedgehog – honeybadger-style.

  13. 13
    René

    I cannot see the video here either, but I saw it before elsewhere. I recall the article stating the speed of the bird (a swallow, not a swift!). Swallows are not swift flyers at all. I once witnessed a swallow, flying low, chasing insects, being chased by a happily slow running dog.

  14. 14
    Danny C

    That is a cool video.

  15. 15
    Inaji

    René:

    Swallows are not swift flyers at all.

    They might not be where you are, however, the cliff swallows inhabiting the side of the bridge down the road from me are very speedy indeed.

    I once witnessed a swallow, flying low, chasing insects, being chased by a happily slow running dog.

    Gee, it was hunting. Think that might have had something to do with the speed?

  16. 16
    ck

    ChasCPeterson wrote:

    you’re welcome

    If I had a cat, I think I’d have no choice but to get that toy for it.

  17. 17
    Mobius

    Don’t know about cats, but I have seen footage of fish in the Amazon jumping up and pulling monkeys out of trees.

  18. 18
    twas brillig (stevem)

    re caine@3:

    I just followed the link and aaauuuughh, the teeth!

    I, too, was really freaked by the sight of those teeth. I wonder, is that why they named it Tigerfish?
    Was catching birds the evolutionary motivation for developing such teeth?

  19. 19
    ChasCPeterson

    Teeth like that are for eating (other) fish.

  20. 20
    Danny C

    Weird.

  21. 21
    Stardrake

    See, this is why African swallows’ non-migratory habits come back to bite them….

    They should’ve had coconuts to fight back with!

  22. 22
    Jeff Gilmour

    I’ve seen an arthropod (centipede) catch a bat!

  23. 23
    ChasCPeterson

    I’ve seen an episode or two of River Monsters with Jeremy Wade catching those. Bigger ones at that!

    That’s a different species (but same genus), the truly impressive goliath tigerfish.

  24. 24
    ChasCPeterson

    The score is tied:
    Centipedes 2
    Bats 2

  25. 25
    Ragutis

    I know sharks and some fish feed on gulls and even pelicans if they can ambush them while they’re resting, and I’ve seen kingfish skyrocket and dolpjin/dorado/mahi catch flying fish in the air, but grabbing a bird in flight is darned impressive.

  26. 26
    John Phillips, FCD

    There was a clip in a recent BBC program, Nature’s Weirdest Events S03E03, showing introduced (Asian IIRC) catfish in French, Spanish and Italian rivers catching pigeons when the pigeons came down to drink and bathe at the waters edge.

  27. 27
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    I, for one, welcome our new piscine overlords with open arms. Er, fins. Fins, yeah. Open fins.

  28. 28
    Cardinal Shrew

    The bullfrogs in my mom’s koi pond eat the birds that stop by to bathe.

    I have also seen a grey squirrel chase a a red tailed hawk from its perch.

  29. 29
    Frank McDonald

    I know birds eating fish are a everyday event, but its still cool.

    http://www.thetelegram.com/Living/2014-01-11/article-3571799/Blackout-2014-and-birds/1

  30. 30
    Irène Delse, on dry land among seabirds

    John Phillips, FCD #26:

    The catfish-that-eats-pigeons video is way cool. And those fish must have put in a lot of calculating to arrive at that behaviour, since they had to strand themselves on the river shore to catch the birds.

  31. 31
    Thumper: Who Presents Boxes Which Are Not Opened

    Aw :( I was gonna link to the Goliath tigerfish, but Chas beat me to it @23.

  32. 32
    rnilsson

    Obviously a swift swallow – gulp! Leaves nothing to chews from.

  33. 33
    randay

    Nice video. I just discovered where to find many others. Elise runs a site called IFLScience(I Fucking Love Science). She gives short descriptions of her stories which are then linked in “show more”.
    http://www.youtube.com/user/IFLScience?feature=watch

  34. 34
    rwiess

    Add another point for salamanders. I took a photo of a larval pacific giant salamander who was in the process of swallowing a fledgling bird.

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