WHILE IT WASN’T Nessie hiding in the depths, monsters have been discovered lurking in the Grand Union Canal. Two huge catfish (one weighing nearly 20kg), more commonly associated with the rivers in northern Europe, have been hauled out of the canal at Soulbury Locks in Buckinghamshire.
The non-native catfish, so called because of their prominent barbels which resemble a cat’s whiskers, were caught by the Canal & River Trust as it carried out a fish population survey along this part of the waterway.
“It is not certain how the two catfish came to be in the canal although it is likely that someone has illegally dumped them after finding that a small pet catfish has simply outgrown its tank,” said John Ellis, CRT’s national fisheries and angling manager.
“Catfish are powerful fish and are hard to catch and have been known to occasionally eat birds, small animals and non-native crayfish. Being bottom feeders, most people would never see one while visiting the canal but, if you see a big fish swimming in the canal, it could be this monster of the waterways.”
Once removed, the catfish were re-homed to a much more suitable location. Visit canalrivertrust.org.uk/enjoy-the-waterways/fishing for photos and info to help you identify the fish found in our waterways.