E. Lucius, Linn. Syst. Nat. torn. 1. p. 516. Bloch, Ichth. pl. 32. Don. Brit. Fish. vol. v. pl. 109. Turt. Brit. Faun. p. 105. Flem. Brit. An. p. 184. Cuv. Reg. An. torn. 11. p. 282. Pike, Will. Hist. Pise. p. 236. tab. P. 5. f. 2. Penn. Brit. Zool. vol. in. p. 320. pl. 63. Id. (Edit. 1812). vol. iii. p. 424. pl. 74. Bowd. Brit. Jr. wat. Fish. Draw. no. 17. Yarr. Brit. Fish. vol. 1. p. 383.

Length

From two to three feet; sometimes more.

Description

(Form). Oblong, rather elongated, suddenly narrowing behind the dorsal and anal fins; sides compressed: depth nearly uniform throughout, about one-sixth of the entire length: head large, rather more than one-fourth: cranium flat, a little concave between the eyes; snout broad and depressed, rounded at the extremity; lower jaw projecting beyond the upper: intermaxillaries, vomer, palatines, tongue, pharyngeans, and branchial arches, armed with sharp card-like teeth of unequal lengths; also a series of long sharp teeth on the sides of the lower jaw: eyes moderate, situate half-way between the end of the snout and posterior edge of the opercle: nostrils a little in advance: above and below each orbit, beneath the lower jaw on each side, and along the margin of the preopercle, a row of pores: gill-opening very large: cheeks and upper part of the opercle covered with small scales; scales on the body moderate, oblong-oval, with the basal margin three-lobed: lateral line at first slightly descending, but afterwards straight: dorsal placed very far back, commencing at about two-thirds of the entire length; first six rays simple, gradually increasing in length, the first being very short; seventh longest; this and all the succeeding ones branched: anal similar to the dorsal, and answering to it: caudal forked: pectorals attached low down, not half the length of the head, rounded; fourth ray longest: ventrals equal to the pectorals, placed at about the middle of the entire length; third ray longest:

B. 14 or 15*; D. 21; A. 18 or 19; C. 19, etc.; P. 15; V. 11.

{Colours). Head, back, and sides, bright olive-green spotted with yellow, or, when out of season, greenish gray with pale spots; more or less of a metallic gloss; belly white: fins dusky, spotted and variegated with red.

Probably indigenous, though usually supposed to have been introduced into England during the reign of Henry VIII. Found in rivers, lakes, and most stagnant waters. Very voracious, preying on other fish, including its own species, as well as water-rats and young water-fowl. Is very long-lived. Grows rapidly, and occasionally attains a weight of thirty, forty, or even sixty pounds. Spawns in March and April.