How to Catch a Bird… If You’re a Fish

Feb 20, 2021
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Some toothy tigerfish have been documented catching unlikely prey in the most unlikely of ways: snatching birds right out of the sky.
Hosted by: Stefan Chin
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Image Sources:
Cucherousset J, Boulêtreau S, Azémar F, Compin A, Guillaume M, Santoul F (2012) “Freshwater Killer Whales”: Beaching Behavior of an Alien Fish to Hunt Land Birds. PLoS ONE 7(12): e50840.

  • Go to​ to try their Waves and Light course. Sign up now and get 20% off an annual Premium subscription.

    SciShowSciShow14 days ago
  • I love the lunging from the deep tactic. Lol

    Mike PetellMike Petell3 days ago
  • fish that swallow swallow

    Amira LozseAmira Lozse8 days ago
  • Imagine a fish using an iPad to learn from the waves and lights course to improve its hunting abilities 😂 Knowledge and understanding really does improve your general success in life.

    Philo-sophyPhilo-sophy9 days ago
  • Look up blue planet 2 giant trevally if you want to see a bird eating fish. It’s probably pretty close

    Mitchell TakechiMitchell Takechi10 days ago
  • Footage ? : )

    Patrick RosePatrick Rose10 days ago
  • This reminds me of a funny story I once heard: I was talking to a farmer once and he once saw one of his chickens sitting in the lake (chickens usually dont like going into water but his would occasionally walk into the water to look for bugs and occasionally they'd just float around for awhile if they got in too deep) and he saw one of them suddenly got pulled under for a few seconds before popping back to the surface before flapping like crazy and scrambling back onto shore. He figures that it must have been tasted by a cat fish because a bass or a trout wouldnt have the power or weight to pull a chicken under the water like that, and once it realized the chicken wasn't a dead animal or another fish it let go of the bird.

    Arthas MenethilArthas Menethil11 days ago
  • Next video: How to Catch a Human… If You’re a Fish

    Edwin HuangEdwin Huang11 days ago
  • So that's why I can't get coconuts? Tiger Fish are eating African Swallows?

    Nicolai VelikiNicolai Veliki12 days ago
  • .... uh, I feel bad for those swallows and the songbirds that sharks eat. How could they ever expect this?

    K. MorenoK. Moreno12 days ago
  • Can you see a tiger fish fin-ishing a brilliant course.

    Jay MJay M12 days ago
  • If it is an artificial lake, then introducing some pret fish for the tiger fish would be a good thing to do. Also, it would be important to get prey fish that would not damage the ecosystem surrounding the artificial lake in case anything escapes.

    confusedwhaleconfusedwhale12 days ago
  • African or European?

    James RunyonJames Runyon12 days ago
  • Wels catfish in Spain lunge up onto shore to capture and eat ducks on shore

    Duane SamuelsonDuane Samuelson13 days ago
  • Holy hell. Nature is bad ass

    Bad MonkeyBad Monkey13 days ago
  • Nom nom nom

    Nira of GallifreyNira of Gallifrey14 days ago
  • What's the average speed of a unlanden swallow?

    Rafael CardozoRafael Cardozo14 days ago
  • Cool

    Joshua SpurgeonJoshua Spurgeon14 days ago
  • It makes me wonder why swallows don't fly higher.

    Aidan OrAidan Or14 days ago
  • No images of the real birds and fish? No footage of the hunt?

    Christian HerrmannChristian Herrmann14 days ago
  • River Monsters dude caught a Tiger fish it looked terrifying

    dmcepedadmcepeda14 days ago
  • Where did you get the map render you used to show the dam's location? It's beautiful

    Jr MikulecJr Mikulec14 days ago
  • Giant Trevally do that too, but they look more cool than tiger fish, they even arrive on the shallows just in time for the fledgling chicks. They showed it on "Blue Planet II" with David Attenborough's sexy narration.

    S_EATERS_EATER14 days ago
  • Absolutely amazing

    Rebel UsaRebel Usa14 days ago
  • Here's what you came to see: oh wait, they don't actually show a video of that, sorry.

    Nightman ComethNightman Cometh14 days ago
  • 😳😱😳 OMG. They also get sad 😢😭 when we we fish their friends and family. Science said so. They might be conscious to some extent. Ahhhh. But they so yummy 😋🤤

    tracey adkinstracey adkins14 days ago
  • in a place in i think it was italy, catfish hunt pigeons so yea

    Xenarthra VRChatXenarthra VRChat14 days ago
  • Eventually those fishes are just gonna decide to walk on land.

    FakeUser NameTwoFakeUser NameTwo15 days ago
  • I was looking at the eagle and imagine it having a field day near that lake. Just let the fish come to you.

    hulduhuldu15 days ago
  • For the algorithm.

    BB15 days ago
  • When pray fights back

    Swiftcloud Cloud of swiftSwiftcloud Cloud of swift15 days ago
  • Clickbait title - fish can't read..........

    nicklas sivénnicklas sivén15 days ago
  • Make a video to show fish how to use USworlds and find this video

    Andres VazquezAndres Vazquez15 days ago
  • This could put the tiger-fish in danger as the fish eagle is very common throughout sub Saharan Africa.

    MCMLXIableMCMLXIable15 days ago
  • ofc it's Tigerfish

    Vee DragonVee Dragon15 days ago
  • A fish going birding. Nice.

    Randy JamesRandy James15 days ago
    • Thanks for the comment

      Jerry FrometaJerry Frometa15 days ago
  • Fascinating! First they learn how to compensate for water refraction... then they start fashioning bone and beak tools.... then they make fire....

    The Hungry PhysicistThe Hungry Physicist15 days ago
    • Thanks for the comment

      Jerry FrometaJerry Frometa15 days ago
  • Open Now "Tigerfish School of advance refraction study and Postgraduation in Swallow technique"

  • I was recently considering turning into a fish (for personal reasons) but I really liked eating birds, so I was concerned about giving that up. So this video came just in the nick of time. Thanks Scishow!

    MrAB2357MrAB235715 days ago
    • Thanks for the comment

      Jerry FrometaJerry Frometa15 days ago
  • I have seen on film of Tigerfish eating Birds in the Congo River.

    John AustinJohn Austin15 days ago
  • Wait wtf, I scrolled down to comments before the video started just to read the jokes. But then I scrolled up and it wasn't Hank. This dude was talking for like a full 30 seconds and I didn't even know it wasn't Hank.

    TLo137TLo13715 days ago
  • The fish that compensated for refraction got it's course from Brilliant and now you can too 😜

    staysicstaysic15 days ago
  • south Africa im never going back to south Africa

    Sergio GomezSergio Gomez15 days ago
  • Sometimes, I like to Fill UP my Bathtub with Milk, lay in the Fetal Position and pretend that I'm a Cheerio.

    James PaulJames Paul15 days ago
  • since when was Hank asian???

    Gregory FriedmanGregory Friedman15 days ago
  • Does SciShow have a mandatory hand talking policy?

    Abu BahuAbu Bahu15 days ago
  • That’s so wild.

    Jack HammerJack Hammer15 days ago
  • Archerfish solved this problem too. They are able to project s stream of water from their heads with such force that it breaks the surface, and can knock small insects off the vegetation overhanging the water.

    metamorphicordermetamorphicorder15 days ago
  • The refraction is less of an effect, the greater the angle subtended between line of sight and the water surface. Attacking from deeper reduces this angle resulting in a greater success rate. Angler fish, by the way, have solved the problem of attacking insects from near the surface.

    Nicole KNicole K15 days ago
  • So they’ve learned the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow?

    Evil SharkeyEvil Sharkey15 days ago
  • This was a sales video. To see the real footage buy their product. Sorta like Timeshare sales.

    Downeaster MaineUSADowneaster MaineUSA15 days ago
  • If an eagle gets eaten by a fish, I don't think that stupid eagle deserves to breed. Survival of the fittest, not dumb birds that get caught by fish.😋

    K OBrienK OBrien15 days ago
    • @Plus Any bird that gets eaten by shark, I will give a 'pass', fair enough.

      K OBrienK OBrien13 days ago
    • But what if it was a big ass shark ? They're fishes too, after all.

      PlusPlus14 days ago
  • wtf

    Li Guang NingLi Guang Ning15 days ago
  • European pike eats baby ducks on a regular basis.

    Jakob RosenqvistJakob Rosenqvist15 days ago
  • Can you add a Turkish subtitle option? please

    Musabium AkdağMusabium Akdağ15 days ago
  • "The early bird, gets the worm." "The early fish, gets the bird."

    Christopher GChristopher G15 days ago
    • Show up late and do your thing as a normal human being when all the animals have eaten each other.

      A DA D15 days ago
  • There is another difficulty for fish swimming just below the surface; higher water resistance, making for slower swimming.

    Edze Jan de HaanEdze Jan de Haan15 days ago
  • I read the thumbnail as trigger fish instead of tiger fish and I thought it was gonna be that one that hunts insects with a jet of water but large enough to take down a bird!

    theduke ofweaselstheduke ofweasels15 days ago
  • imagine being a bird and losing to FISH....

    Hugh MannHugh Mann15 days ago
  • What puzzles me is what they do afterwards. How do they, er, swallow?

    Freddo FlintstonoFreddo Flintstono15 days ago
  • . Just wit till you see the goliath tigerfish

    ꧁꧅ìꦧ꧀ꦖì꧅꧂꧁꧅ìꦧ꧀ꦖì꧅꧂15 days ago
  • Nice 👌

    Amit dasAmit das15 days ago
  • What do you mean it's not evolved to catch birds? Those teeth look like a bird cage to me.

    Nate JansenNate Jansen15 days ago
  • Stefan needs to teach the fishes how to sign up for NordVPN 1st to access Brilliant from their SA lake.

    レイリー Reyleeレイリー Reylee15 days ago
  • Give the fish a bird, the fish is full for a day. Teaching the fish physics....

    P DaPhuuLzP DaPhuuLz16 days ago
  • When you're hungry, you'll find food wherever you can, even if it's flying through the air... :P

    twocvbloketwocvbloke16 days ago
  • Does it seem fishy that a fish could swallow a swallow?

    Chris JagerChris Jager16 days ago
  • Couldn't get any footage?

    Matt CookMatt Cook16 days ago
  • Do they develop the same eye modifications as archer fish?

    Mojos BigstickMojos Bigstick16 days ago
  • Trevally says Hi!

    Steven CarreonSteven Carreon16 days ago
  • When the birds are gone they will prey on gazelles.

    Harold FairshareHarold Fairshare16 days ago
  • Only this channel could suggest a brilliant class for fish and make it make sense.

    key_vkey_v16 days ago
  • What a segue to the sponsor message 🤣

    EchoeOneEchoeOne16 days ago
  • I'm now convinced that everything with tiger in its name is born crazy!

    Marco PohlMarco Pohl16 days ago
  • Interesting that they don't stock the lake with natural prey.

    Jeff MillerJeff Miller16 days ago
  • Oh, god, fish eating birds is just so _wrong_ and _backwards._

    Shawna BurtShawna Burt16 days ago
  • Simple solution- just get the tiger fish to eat the Eagles! "Welcome to the hotel Calif..... AAARGH!"

    Dr FillDr Fill16 days ago
  • super smooth segway

    Not to ScaleNot to Scale16 days ago
  • once when my friends were talking and one of them said a joke everyone else were laughing. I didnt get it but i still laughed why did i laugh at something i didnt get it?

    Life Of BobaLife Of Boba16 days ago
  • Evolution man

    Clay SoggyfriesClay Soggyfries16 days ago
  • What ever happened to olivia???? Bring her back!!!

    terramirterramir16 days ago
  • Fish watching this video like 👁 👄 👁

    lil Snaplil Snap16 days ago
  • This is the kind of stuff that jumpstarts rapid evolution. 3 times the pressure on hunting, increased pressure from predation, and a noticeable margin in success between individuals fron which natural selection can select victors. I would not be surprised if, a few decades or so down the line, this population develops significant divergence from the average norm in adaptation to the push towards hunting non aquatic prey, such as better eyes, and more effective surface water camouflage to prevent prey from seeing them before they lunge. Perhaps their teeth might become more suited for handling birds, like being sharper and more curved.they may even reduce in size to compensate for the less abundant food and need to lunge from the water to catch prey, as a lighter fish can jump higher.

    Mr. BlackMr. Black16 days ago
  • Ok, Stefan, the transition from subject to advertisement was the smoothest and most relevant I've seen yet. And, l have seen a lot, even on this channel. Bravo.

    aldousd666aldousd66616 days ago
  • River Monsters had the Tiger fish on multiple episodes because it's so nasty. Just a tremendously dangerous fish.

    RealReal16 days ago
  • Flying fish when?

    Egill VanadissonEgill Vanadisson16 days ago
  • How the tables have turned.

    Colonel BananaColonel Banana16 days ago
  • those birds are so damn fast too

    TumblejackTumblejack16 days ago
  • Giant Trevelly do the same 👌🏼 but with seabirds and out in the open ocean

    Ross CoRoss Co16 days ago
  • Tiger's aren't the only fish that hunt birds. Catfish all over the world will prey on birds also!

    Julie LoveJulie Love16 days ago
  • Predation from eagles doesn't sound like a bad thing, however if they start luring in and ganging up on eagles then that might be a problem. But humans can just introduce prey fish to stop this.

    Barney RubbleBarney Rubble16 days ago
  • nero?

    Jassy ToribioJassy Toribio16 days ago
  • Yah, Tigerfish subscribing to brilliant.

    Anik Samiur RahmanAnik Samiur Rahman16 days ago
  • Do you swallow? Tigerfish: yes.

    rockets4kidsrockets4kids16 days ago
  • Bird: haha I can fly and you can't do anything about it Fish: eats the bird mocking him To kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

    JPJP16 days ago
  • They ate 300 swallows. Were they African swallows, or European swalliws, and were they carrying coconuts?

    Rob WRob W16 days ago
  • "hey light, Get Bent!"

    Patrick HudsonPatrick Hudson16 days ago
  • Tigerfish to Archerfish: "can i copy your answer to our physics homework on 'refraction'...?"

    m. alontom. alonto16 days ago
  • I'm impressed that you correctly used a Fish Eagle image instead of a Bald Eagle image.

    Daniel StaalDaniel Staal16 days ago
  • The eagle is just getting revenge for it's bro fallen in combat.

    Partha Pratim SahaPartha Pratim Saha16 days ago