A big northern pike was spotted stalking an adult hen mallard, because pike will try on anything that swims.
There's an old saying that goes like this: "If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it's probably a duck."
Now let's add to that: "If a duck tries to swim in freshwater and something tries to eat it, then it's probably a northern pike."
We know that pike reside in our North American lakes and rivers, but the Esox lucius is alive and well around Europe (and especially Scandinavia) where they grow to fantastic sizes and lengths. These are the fish of dreams for anglers the world over, and in fact, the stuff of nightmares.
Enter one pair of mallards--a drake and a hen--dabbling around some docks in the Netherlands and trying to pick up some free bits of bread when a sneaky pike appears under the boat they are swimming near.
Cue the "JAWS" music...
We certainly know what a big, bad northern pike can do, but trying to eat a full size hen mallard is a big step even for one of these voracious eating machines.
The USFWS says that northern pike "are distributed between the Arctic portions of North America, Europe, Asia, and Siberia. Most populations of northern pike are north of latitude 40 degrees north. The range of northern pike in North America extends from Alaska through Canada to the upper mid-western portion of the United States."
They are especially prevalent in the Scandinavian countries such as the Netherlands, but are very common in Sweden. Pike in these northern climates seem to grow to astounding sizes and weights with anglers across the region using a variety of large baits and heavy fishing gear to target them.
We've seen them eat every other kind of fish, muskrats, birds, and yes, even ducks, but this may be the first attack on a duck of this size. At least that someone caught on video!