Posted on December 10, 2012 - 06:21 by Flora Malein
Scientists observed the catfish lying in wait in shallow water in order to catch the pigeons.
Released in a set of slightly gruesome images, the scientists recorded the catfish hunting pigeons in a behaviour that mimics the strategies used by killer whales hunting seals on ice floes. The catfish located in the River Tarn, Southern France, are thought to sense the presence of the pigeons from vibrations in the air using their long whiskers, which stand erect while they are lying in wait.
The behaviour was observed on a small island in the Tarn where pigeons go to drink water and wash. Taking pictures and video from a bridge overhead, the scientists recorded 54 ‘beaching behaviours’, where the catfish risked being stranded on the bank to catch their feathered prey. 28 percent of these events were successful with the land birds returned to the river by the fish and swallowed ...