About Northern pike (Esox lucius) Danube Delta
The Northern Pike (Esox lucius) is a freshwater species widely spread across all Europe. In Romania, the most specimens can be found in the Danube's Delta.
Generally, a Romanian Pike measures between 40 and 50 cm and weights around 1 to 1, 8 Kg, but there have been reported specimens measuring between 1, 2 and 1, 8 m, with a weight of 20 Kg.
The Northern Pike has a relatively broad body, oblong and flattened sideways. Its head is long, with a snout resembling a duck beak. Its eyes are disposed on its forehead. Due to the fact that it has a broad mouth, the Northern Pike can swallow large fish. Its teeth are well developed, strong and sharp. Its lower jaw is longer than its superior jaw. Its dorsal fin is located near its tail, at the same level as its ventral fin. Its backline is slightly curved.
The Northern Pike gains its colour depending on the quality of the water it inhabits. Thus, its backside varies from a greyish green to a yellowish green, its belly is white and its sides are striped.
The Northern Pike is a predator fish with a fast evolution. During its first evolution stages, the pike lives in groups, but as an adult it will become solitary.
During daytime, the pike remains hidden in the aquatic vegetation, attacking all fish which come nearby. During night time, the pike hunts actively to relieve its hunger. The Northern Pike can swallow large fish, which weigh almost a third of its body weight and it generally feeds on small fish, frogs, snakes and small mammals.
A male Northern Pike reaches its sexual maturity at age 3 and a female somewhere between 3 and 4 years. The reproduction period lasts from February to March.