Snakeheads are members of the freshwater perciform fish family Channidae, native to Africa and Asia. These elongated predatory fish are distinguished by a long dorsal fin, large mouth and shiny teeth. They breathe air with a suprabranchial organ, a primitive form of a labyrinth organ. There are two extant genera, Channa in Asia, and Parachanna in Africa, consisting of 5-6 species.
They have become notorious as invasive species, to the extent of becoming a byword for monster in popular culture.
The size of the snakehead species differs greatly. "Dwarf snakeheads" like Channa gachua grow to 10 inches (25 cm). Most snakeheads grow up to 2 or 3 feet (60–90 cm). Two species (Channa marulius and Channa micropeltes) can reach a length of more than 1 meter and a weight of more than 6 kg.
Snakeheads are thrust-feeders which consume plankton, aquatic insects, and mollusks when small. When adult, they mostly feed on other fish such as carp, or on frogs. In rare cases small mammals such as rats are
The giant snakehead (Channa micropeltes) is native throughout Asia, and is the most aggressive snakehead. They can grow to around 1 meter in length.
Channidae are well-represented in the fossil record and known from numerous specimens. Research indicates that snakeheads likely originated in the south Himalayan region of Indian subcontinent (modern-day Northern India and Eastern Pakistan) at least 50 million years ago, during the Early Eocene epoch. By 17 Ma, during the Early Miocene, Channidae had spread into western and central Eurasia, and by 8 Ma, during the late Tortonian, they could be found throughout Africa and East Asia. As Channidae are adapted to climates of high precipitation with mean temperatures of 20 °C (68 °F), their migrations into Europe and Asia correspond to the development of the Intertropical Convergence Zone, which increased air humidity, and the intensification of the East Asian monsoon, respectively. Both weather patterns emerged due to greater vertical growth of the Alps, Pyrenees, and Himalayas, which affected Eurasian climactic patterns.
Battle against the Moray EelEdit
A Moray Eel is swimming in a tank in an aquarium somewhere in the USA. A man walks into the room, holding a smaller tank with a blanket over it, a lays it down next to the eel's tank. He then exits the room, leaving the eel and the blanketed tank in the room together. Slowly the blanket slides off revealing a large Snakehead thrashing about in the tank. It pushes the lid off of its enclosure and slowly wriggles out, landing with a plop on the tiled floor. It slowly crawls towards the eel enclosure and begins its acesion up the side of the tank, miraculaousy managing to stick to the wall. It reaches the top of the tank and slides into the pool with a splash, alerting the eel to its presence. The eel sizes up the Snakehead before slinking away into the coral behind it. The snakehead make a beeline for the torn remains of the eel's latest lunch, which is floating right next to the hiding eel. It takes a bite out of the fish and the eel lunges out from its hiding place, grabbing the snakehead's tail in its jaws. The Snakehead jerks violently and swings its head around, latching onto the middle of the eel. The moray releashes its grip on the snakehead's tail but the snakehead continues tearing into the morays mid section. The moray swings it head around and digs its teeth into the snakehead's head, shaking it about. The fresh water fish tries to break free but the eel's grasp is too strong and it soon lies dead in the tank.
2 hours later
The man returns to the room and finds the snakehead missing and he franticly looks for here it has gotten too. He peers into the tank and sees the shredded remains of the so called Fishzilla amongst the coral reef, the moray eel nibbling on its head.
Winner Moray Eel
The eel's larger size was what won it the day which the snakehead's aggressivness coulden't compete with.