This blue catfish cannibalized one of its own.
The blue catfish has become an iconic game fish wherever it is found. These monsters grow to sizes well over 100 pounds in ideal conditions and put up one heck of a fight when hooked by an angler. One thing you may not realize is that blue cats are opportunistic eating machines. If something presents an easy meal, odds are they are going to take it, no matter what it happens to be.
This includes their own. Catfish are notorious cannibals if the opportunity presents itself. These anglers recently proved it while catfishing on the Tennessee River. One of the fishermen hooks into a chunky, 80-pound blue cat that puts up one heck of a fight.
Once they finally have the fish on board, they notice something strange in the fish's mouth. It's another blue cat that was apparently half-swallowed before the bigger fish took the hook!
Well, that's not something you see everyday while fishing! These guys estimated the size of the swallowed cat to be about five pounds. That's a massive meal for any fish. Blue cats are usually considered apex predators. However, that designation seems to only really apply once they reach a size larger than any of their fellow blues.
In case you were wondering just how big they can get, the all-tackle world record recognized by the International Game Fish Association is a 143-pounder caught in Virginia in 2011. There have been many others documented in the 120- to 130-pound range as well.
Seeing this video, it's easy to see how some cats have been able to reach those great weights given the right conditions. One of the cooler aspects of the blue cat is that they have been observed feeding on invasive Asian carp. That makes them valuable not just as a game fish, but as a conservation tool too.
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