Giant Catfish Eat Pigeons

Although all animals have predators, pigeons encounter more than most.

Falcons, cats, turtles, and pelicans are just a few of the hungry critters that eat them. But pigeons face treachery from an even more sinister and unlikely foe: Deep beneath the dark waters of ponds, lakes, and rivers in Europe, a creature with an insatiable appetite dwells… This creature is none other than the wels catfish.

While you might not initially think of it as such, the wels catfish is a fearsome predator. Growing up to 13 feet (4 meters) in length and weighing up to 880 pounds (400 kilograms), these catfish are truly monstrous. And, aside from eating pigeons, they also dine upon annelid worms, insects, gastropods, crustaceans, other fish, frogs, mice, rats, and aquatic birds such as ducks.

Image: Dieter Florian

In the video below, a group of wels catfish ambush unsuspecting pigeons similar to killer whales attacking sea lions on the beach. With stealth and finesse, they capture the pigeons and drag them to a watery grave.

In another video from a different angle, you can observe the sheer power and ferocity of these catfish. Their skill in catching birds is both tremendous and frightening. Birds of prey might snatch fish in the water as prey, but these predatorial fish buck all of the usual stereotypes.