The Wels Catfish (Silurus glanis) is one of the most spread fish in Europe. In Romania it can be found mainly in the Danube and in the Danube's Delta.
The Wels Catfish has a medium size of 0, 5 to 1 m and a weight of 10 to 15 Kg, but there have been captured specimens which measured 3 to 4 m and weighted over 150 Kg.
This fish lives in deep waters, with muddy bottoms. It is a patient hunter, for it will wait for its prey for hours without moving from its position.
The Wels Catfish has no scales and its body is mottled in patches. Its backside and sides are a greenish grey and its belly is a yellowish white.
The Wels Catfish has three pairs of whiskers. One of them is very long and it is used to lure small fish. Among its preys, the Wels Catfish prefers eels. Usually, it feeds on crustaceans, frogs, leeches and large worms.
The Wels Catfish lays its eggs in nests hidden under the water banks or under logs. The male chooses, cleans and defends the spot. The female lays the eggs at the end of spring, when the water is warmer. She will lay between 2000 and 21000 eggs.
The brood will hatch after 6 to 10 days, depending on the water temperature. The male will guard them until they leave the nest.
During autumn, the Wels Catfish gathers in groups and settles in deep holes, where it covers itself with mud and rests during wintertime.