Malayan Water Monitor and the Bighead Carp

Bernard Seah’s image of the Malayan Water Monitor (Varanus salvator) hovering over a fish head was photographed at the Chinese Garden.

MalayanWaterMonitor-carp [BernardSeah]

The water monitor was about 1.6 metres long and the carrion was the head of a large freshwater fish. According to Kelvin KP Lim of the Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum, it looks like a Bighead Carp (Hypophthalmichthys nobilis).

Kelvin does not believe that a monitor is capable of catching such a large fish. Maybe if it is sick or dying.

This is a filter-feeding, non-native freshwater species. It is raised in floating net cages in some of our catchment reservoirs for the biological control of plankton blooms (Lim & Ng, 1990). At the same time the carp is also fattened for the table.

Bernard Seah (image) & Kelvin KP Lim (ID and comments)
23rd October 2016

Lim, K.P. Kelvin & Ng, Peter K.L. (1990). A guide to the freshwater fishes of Singapore. Singapore Science Centre.

The assistance of Subaraj Rajathurai in rerouting the query to Kelvin is much appreciated.

This post is a cooperative effort between Birds, Insects N Creatures Of Asia and BESG to bring the study of birds and their behavior through photography and videography to a wider audience.

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