How to Catch a Bird… If You’re a Fish 

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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. doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0050840

Published on


Feb 20, 2021




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Comments 100   
SciShow 14 days ago
Go to Brilliant.org/SciShow​ to try their Waves and Light course. Sign up now and get 20% off an annual Premium subscription.
Mike Petell
Mike Petell 3 days ago
I love the lunging from the deep tactic. Lol
Amira Lozse
Amira Lozse 8 days ago
fish that swallow swallow
Philo-sophy 8 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.
Mitchell Takechi
Mitchell Takechi 10 days ago
Look up blue planet 2 giant trevally if you want to see a bird eating fish. It’s probably pretty close
Patrick Rose
Patrick Rose 10 days ago
Footage ? : )
Arthas Menethil
Arthas Menethil 10 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.
Edwin Huang
Edwin Huang 11 days ago
Next video: How to Catch a Human… If You’re a Fish
Nicolai Veliki
Nicolai Veliki 11 days ago
So that's why I can't get coconuts? Tiger Fish are eating African Swallows?
K. Moreno
K. Moreno 11 days ago
.... uh, I feel bad for those swallows and the songbirds that sharks eat. How could they ever expect this?
Jay M
Jay M 11 days ago
Can you see a tiger fish fin-ishing a brilliant course.
confusedwhale 12 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.
James Runyon
James Runyon 12 days ago
African or European?
Duane Samuelson
Duane Samuelson 12 days ago
Wels catfish in Spain lunge up onto shore to capture and eat ducks on shore
Bad Monkey
Bad Monkey 13 days ago
Holy hell. Nature is bad ass
Nira of Gallifrey
Nira of Gallifrey 13 days ago
Nom nom nom
Rafael Cardozo
Rafael Cardozo 13 days ago
What's the average speed of a unlanden swallow?
Joshua Spurgeon
Joshua Spurgeon 13 days ago
Aidan Or
Aidan Or 13 days ago
It makes me wonder why swallows don't fly higher.
Christian Herrmann
Christian Herrmann 13 days ago
No images of the real birds and fish? No footage of the hunt?
dmcepeda 14 days ago
River Monsters dude caught a Tiger fish it looked terrifying
Jr Mikulec
Jr Mikulec 14 days ago
Where did you get the map render you used to show the dam's location? It's beautiful
S_EATER 14 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.
Rebel Usa
Rebel Usa 14 days ago
Absolutely amazing
Nightman Cometh
Nightman Cometh 14 days ago
Here's what you came to see: oh wait, they don't actually show a video of that, sorry.
tracey adkins
tracey adkins 14 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 😋🤤
Xenarthra VRChat
Xenarthra VRChat 14 days ago
in a place in i think it was italy, catfish hunt pigeons so yea
FakeUser NameTwo
FakeUser NameTwo 14 days ago
Eventually those fishes are just gonna decide to walk on land.
huldu 14 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.
B 14 days ago
For the algorithm.
Swiftcloud Cloud of swift
When pray fights back
nicklas sivén
nicklas sivén 14 days ago
Clickbait title - fish can't read..........
Andres Vazquez
Andres Vazquez 14 days ago
Make a video to show fish how to use US-first and find this video
MCMLXIable 14 days ago
This could put the tiger-fish in danger as the fish eagle is very common throughout sub Saharan Africa.
Vee Dragon
Vee Dragon 15 days ago
ofc it's Tigerfish
Randy James
Randy James 15 days ago
A fish going birding. Nice.
Jerry Frometa
Jerry Frometa 15 days ago
Thanks for the comment
The Hungry Physicist
Fascinating! First they learn how to compensate for water refraction... then they start fashioning bone and beak tools.... then they make fire....
Jerry Frometa
Jerry Frometa 15 days ago
Thanks for the comment
SUNIL KUMAR 15 days ago
Open Now "Tigerfish School of advance refraction study and Postgraduation in Swallow technique"
MrAB2357 15 days ago
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!
Jerry Frometa
Jerry Frometa 15 days ago
Thanks for the comment
John Austin
John Austin 15 days ago
I have seen on film of Tigerfish eating Birds in the Congo River.
TLo137 15 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.
staysic 15 days ago
The fish that compensated for refraction got it's course from Brilliant and now you can too 😜
Sergio Gomez
Sergio Gomez 15 days ago
south Africa im never going back to south Africa
James Paul
James Paul 15 days ago
Sometimes, I like to Fill UP my Bathtub with Milk, lay in the Fetal Position and pretend that I'm a Cheerio.
Gregory Friedman
Gregory Friedman 15 days ago
since when was Hank asian???
Abu Bahu
Abu Bahu 15 days ago
Does SciShow have a mandatory hand talking policy?
Jack Hammer
Jack Hammer 15 days ago
That’s so wild.
metamorphicorder 15 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.
Nicole K
Nicole K 15 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.
Evil Sharkey
Evil Sharkey 15 days ago
So they’ve learned the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow?
Downeaster MaineUSA
This was a sales video. To see the real footage buy their product. Sorta like Timeshare sales.
K OBrien
K OBrien 15 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 OBrien
K OBrien 13 days ago
@Plus Any bird that gets eaten by shark, I will give a 'pass', fair enough.
Plus 13 days ago
But what if it was a big ass shark ? They're fishes too, after all.
Li Guang Ning
Li Guang Ning 15 days ago
Jakob Rosenqvist
Jakob Rosenqvist 15 days ago
European pike eats baby ducks on a regular basis.
Musabium Akdağ
Musabium Akdağ 15 days ago
Can you add a Turkish subtitle option? please
Christopher G
Christopher G 15 days ago
"The early bird, gets the worm." "The early fish, gets the bird."
A D 15 days ago
Show up late and do your thing as a normal human being when all the animals have eaten each other.
Edze Jan de Haan
Edze Jan de Haan 15 days ago
There is another difficulty for fish swimming just below the surface; higher water resistance, making for slower swimming.
theduke ofweasels
theduke ofweasels 15 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!
Hugh Mann
Hugh Mann 15 days ago
imagine being a bird and losing to FISH....
Freddo Flintstono
Freddo Flintstono 15 days ago
What puzzles me is what they do afterwards. How do they, er, swallow?
. Just wit till you see the goliath tigerfish
Amit das
Amit das 15 days ago
Nice 👌
Nate Jansen
Nate Jansen 15 days ago
What do you mean it's not evolved to catch birds? Those teeth look like a bird cage to me.
レイリー Reylee
Stefan needs to teach the fishes how to sign up for NordVPN 1st to access Brilliant from their SA lake.
P DaPhuuLz
P DaPhuuLz 15 days ago
Give the fish a bird, the fish is full for a day. Teaching the fish physics....
twocvbloke 15 days ago
When you're hungry, you'll find food wherever you can, even if it's flying through the air... :P
Chris Jager
Chris Jager 15 days ago
Does it seem fishy that a fish could swallow a swallow?
Matt Cook
Matt Cook 15 days ago
Couldn't get any footage?
Mojos Bigstick
Mojos Bigstick 15 days ago
Do they develop the same eye modifications as archer fish?
Steven Carreon
Steven Carreon 15 days ago
Trevally says Hi!
Harold Fairshare
Harold Fairshare 15 days ago
When the birds are gone they will prey on gazelles.
key_v 15 days ago
Only this channel could suggest a brilliant class for fish and make it make sense.
EchoeOne 15 days ago
What a segue to the sponsor message 🤣
Marco Pohl
Marco Pohl 15 days ago
I'm now convinced that everything with tiger in its name is born crazy!
Jeff Miller
Jeff Miller 15 days ago
Interesting that they don't stock the lake with natural prey.
Shawna Burt
Shawna Burt 15 days ago
Oh, god, fish eating birds is just so _wrong_ and _backwards._
Dr Fill
Dr Fill 15 days ago
Simple solution- just get the tiger fish to eat the Eagles! "Welcome to the hotel Calif..... AAARGH!"
Not to Scale
Not to Scale 15 days ago
super smooth segway
Life Of Boba
Life Of Boba 15 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?
Clay Soggyfries
Clay Soggyfries 15 days ago
Evolution man
terramir 15 days ago
What ever happened to olivia???? Bring her back!!!
lil Snap
lil Snap 15 days ago
Fish watching this video like 👁 👄 👁
Mr. Black
Mr. Black 15 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.
aldousd666 15 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.
Real 15 days ago
River Monsters had the Tiger fish on multiple episodes because it's so nasty. Just a tremendously dangerous fish.
Egill Vanadisson
Egill Vanadisson 15 days ago
Flying fish when?
Colonel Banana
Colonel Banana 15 days ago
How the tables have turned.
Tumblejack 15 days ago
those birds are so damn fast too
Ross Co
Ross Co 15 days ago
Giant Trevelly do the same 👌🏼 but with seabirds and out in the open ocean
Julie Love
Julie Love 15 days ago
Tiger's aren't the only fish that hunt birds. Catfish all over the world will prey on birds also!
Barney Rubble
Barney Rubble 15 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.
Jassy Toribio
Jassy Toribio 15 days ago
Anik Samiur Rahman
Anik Samiur Rahman 15 days ago
Yah, Tigerfish subscribing to brilliant.
rockets4kids 15 days ago
Do you swallow? Tigerfish: yes.
JP 15 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
Rob W
Rob W 15 days ago
They ate 300 swallows. Were they African swallows, or European swalliws, and were they carrying coconuts?
Patrick Hudson
Patrick Hudson 15 days ago
"hey light, Get Bent!"
m. alonto
m. alonto 15 days ago
Tigerfish to Archerfish: "can i copy your answer to our physics homework on 'refraction'...?"
Daniel Staal
Daniel Staal 15 days ago
I'm impressed that you correctly used a Fish Eagle image instead of a Bald Eagle image.
Partha Pratim Saha
Partha Pratim Saha 15 days ago
The eagle is just getting revenge for it's bro fallen in combat.