Stomach contents of Northern Pike

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Scott K
Scott K's picture
Stomach contents of Northern Pike
<p>Hi everyone, I am interested in your experience with the size/type of fish you have discovered in the gullet/stomach contents of any pike. Mammals and water fowl discovered inside the pikes gullet/stomach would be interesting as well.Thanks!</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p>
TonyS's picture
Once we had a 36" swallow a q
Once we had a 36" swallow a quick strike rig. Inside the stomach was an 18" pike and several shiners in the 4"-6" range
andy's picture
Other pike

I have caught many, many northern pike over the years with smaller pike tails sticking out of their throats.  We have also witnessed large (15+ lb) pike thrashing on the surface trying to deal with a 5-6 lb pike stuck halfway down their throat.  Also saw a swimming squirrel go down in a big swirl.  Many, many crappies are found in pike stomachs when we clean them.  

Scott K
Scott K's picture
Thanks Tony and Andy! This is

Thanks Tony and Andy! This is the kind of stuff I'm interested in hearing, let's hear from some more members.

the bearded angler
the bearded angler's picture
We have witnessed a pike take

We have witnessed a pike take a young gosling, the panic that followed with its sibblings was insane and lack of panic from its parents interested me greatly. As well once I was reaching down from the dock to get my thumb in a 13-14 inch crappie and had a very large pike come out of nowhere and tear it off my line, it was one of the biggest pike heads and mouths I have seen in person so far.  As far as stomach contents of ones I have filleted, plenty of young perch and black crappie. I usually only keep them ice fishing and rarely over 28 inches.

Scott K
Scott K's picture
Thanks bearded angler, more g

Thanks bearded angler, more good stuff!

Hengelaar's picture
The most interesting ones I c

The most interesting ones I can remember:


I once saw a 33 incher swimming around. The fish was clearly having a very bad time with someting. When I got close, I could see she was all swolled up. Looked like she was dying. I foul hooked her and brought her in, to see what was up. No fight at all; she was on her last fins. We could see the tail of a good sized Tench sticking out of her gullet. We knew trying to pull the Tench out backwards wasn't gonna do the Pike any favors. Also knew she probably wasn't gonna make it otherwise. Gave her a few minutes, but when she started going belly-up we put her out of her misery. Then we took the Tench out. It was partly digested (not pretty), but we could still measure it. It was 17 inches and plump (as Tench are). Proved to be too much for that Esox.


Another one was a 36 incher I caught. I was holding her under the gill, as ya do, and she started thrashing. I didn't drop her, but the rear section of a musk rat came flying out of her mouth. Just the hind legs and tail. Thankfully, that mess didn't hit me in the face.


On the other side of things, my best Pike of last year, a 47 incher, puked up a ton of tiny little fishies during the fight and in the net. I'm talking fishies of around one inch! I caught the fish on a good sized baitfish.

We've also had smallish (but not tiny!!) pike we were about to land be attacked by larger ones on a few occasions. Always very exciting.

Fishn sure is neat

Scott K
Scott K's picture
Cool stuff Hengelaar!Lets hea

Cool stuff Hengelaar!Lets hear some more guys...

Corey's picture
Stomach Contents

I manage a fisheries database that records stomach contents for the thousands of fish dissected by the DNR, indexed by species of fish dissected as well as the species eaten. I can query it on my lunch break and see if there's anything interesting.

Scott K
Scott K's picture
That would be great Corey!Tha

That would be great Corey!Thanks!

Eli's picture
I've found numerous pike tail

I've found numerous pike tails inside bigger pike. This goes back to my pike eating days..

The most interesting thing I've seen was an 8lb pike Mike B gutted which was full of dragonfly nymphs and nothing else.




Scott K
Scott K's picture
Cannibalism seems to be a com

Cannibalism seems to be a common trend, thanks Eli!

Scott K
Scott K's picture
Special Thanks

I would like to send out a special thanks to Corey for providing me with some very interesting data in regards to pike stomach contents in his neck of the woods! I really appreciate it Corey, thanks again!!

Also thanks to Mike B for providing me with info on this topic!

Mike B
Mike B's picture
Funny enough I've been smashi

Funny enough I've been smashing pike the last month with a stupid whitefish bead hook under a float, including a couple over 10 pounds. They be eatin' bugs.

mike b

TonyS's picture
Most the pike I caught this w

Most the pike I caught this winter were on a tungsten jig and maggot.  No big ones but several 25"-30" - most came up 10' off bottom to chase that stupid little bait

CatmanND's picture
Well, a couple of weeks ago,

Well, a couple of weeks ago, I caught a 24 inch pike at Phelps Mill, by Fergus Falls MN and it had a 9 inch salamander in its belly.

andy's picture
Weird pike belly contents

A couple days ago I caught a 4 pound pike that had a star-nosed mole in his belly.  

Here's a link to the mainly digested animal (It's pretty gruesome) - LINK

Graceclaw's picture
Scavengers, scavengers

(Barely even [piscine]?) 
Scavengers, scavengers..... )

I hope for the mole's sake it was scavenged - otherwise, it has quite a tale to tell to its also-deceased mole brethren.