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Meet the Giant Trevally, a Monster Fish That Eats Birds

Let us repeat that: A. FISH. THAT. EATS. BIRDS.


There are certain non-reciprocal rungs on the food chain that we take for granted. For example, cows eat grass, but grass will certainly never eat a cow (unless we're living in some strange apocalyptic universe where the plants have taken over, which, considering the current state of things, may not be such a bad idea). Humans eat pasta, and, except in some certain religions, pasta does not eat humans. Cats eat mice, birds eat fish, etcetera, or so you thought.

Meet the giant trevally, a fish that eats birds.

giant trevally via Shutterstock

Yes, you heard right: This giant, silvery and downright cyborgian fish actually eats birds.

giant trevally Credit: Giphy

And we're not talking chicken nuggets that found their way to the ocean by way of sewer drain or well-meaning beachgoer. We're talking whole birds, live birds, birds that are perfectly healthy and capable of flying but just found themselves in the wrong place at the wrong time with their guard unfortunately down.

giant trevally THIS IS TERRIFYING. (Credit: Giphy)

Many people in America were introduced to the giant trevally in the first 15 minutes of "Blue Planet II," where the giant fish (88 pounds if you're counting) leaps out of the water to devour a young sooty tern in the Seychelles , the Guardian reports.

The giant trevally is a kind of large jack fish that lives throughout the tropical waters of the Indo-Pacific seas.

giant trevally Credit: Giphy

They're commonly hunted by humans for commercial consumption (under the normal order of the food chain) but clearly the trevallies are not satisfied with their lot and stoop to leaping out of the water, huge jaws gaping, to try to swallow fledgling seabirds whole.

We have to admit, it's kind of amazing.

Although rooting both for the predator and prey creates a mildly uncomfortable tension for us, the documentary and Sir David Attenborough manage to deliver brutal death and dying in the animal kingdom in the most serene and atmospheric way possible.

Watch the whole extended clip of the giant trevally in "Blue Planet II" below:

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