Pikes are known to be undiscriminating eaters, swallowing practically anything they can get their mouths around. While this unlucky pike could fit its mouth around a zander (larger cousin of the perch), it simply didn’t have enough space for the smaller fish in its body and it ended the life of both prized catches.

René Spaargaren, a resident of Almere near Amsterdam, pulled the two dead fish, still locked together, out from water near his home. Spaargaren told his story and gave the photos to Dutch conservation news website Natuurbericht. Since then, numerous websites, including the BBC, Huffington Post and more have picked up on the unusual story.

The photos sparked a debate on what could have possessed the pike to attempt to swallow a fish of that size among the angling community. British angling expert Charles Jardine narrowed it down to gluttony in an interview with the BBC.

Before he threw the two dead-locked fish back in the water, Spaargaren measured the pike to be around 3.2 feet, while he estimated the zander to be about 2 feet 5 inches. Together, they weighed about 33 pounds. No doubt, the zander was decidedly too big to be viable prey for the pike.

Images courtesy René Spaargaren

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  • What a greedy fish!

  • Bruce

    Looks like a staged Photo to me. Notice: there is no scales missing from
    the prey fish near the teeth of the Pike! OK so now your saying well
    pike could not close its mouth? Wrong the Prey would still be alive and
    go completely NUTS. Plus as a Avid fisherman I know most Predator Fish
    beat the HE’LL out of the prey before swallowing it thats how they
    capture the head in the first place. first POP or bite is usually on the
    underside from a blind spot position. This Photo looks like a angler
    had a good day Jammed the smaller fish in the dead pikes mouth then
    snapped a picture cleaned them ate them and said he threw them back.
    Plus look how Damn Fresh they are No Gray around the gills eyes are
    clear slime on both (usually a bloated floater dries out on the upper
    side) plus a Total lack of bloating how stupid is the Media?