It’s not just GTs that hunt birds.
Ah yes, the “We’ll Eat Anything!” Wels European Catfish. Here they are after mullet on their end-of-summer downstream migration on France’s lovely (in parts), great River Loire. Strong old beasts, “Les Silures” / “les poissons chats”, indeed, I’ve even caught a few of them (large): pure, boring, “Here, take my rod, will you, I have better things to do…”, plodding submarine arm-arche (I far prefer size-ain’t-everything fishy jetfighters myself). Anyway, here are the on-the-mullet-munch “lumps” –
Aye… If they would only eat pigeons that are too close to the water…
But they’ve been introduced some 40 years ago (they originate from Eastern Europe) and now they are thriving. In the river Loire they are about 50% of the fish biomass (University of Tours study). In the Garonne, they eat 30% of salmon at each fish pass, it is assumed that in the Loire they feed largely on endangered species (salmon, shad, eel), in the Dordogne they had to launch a campaign to net them and remove as much as possible. There is documented evidence for my says. Anglers are fully responsible for the spreading of that pest on the whole French territory, a clearly selfish and irresponsible attitude.
And what about angling? A big fish yes, but you will easily overcome with suitable gear; or provided there’s open water it can come to the shore with somewhat light tackle and a bit of patience.
Raphael (who lives very close to the river Loire and who would prefer not to see those predators here).
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