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Monster fish killed after terrorising Swiss swimmers

July 13, 2009

A man holds a 70 centimetre long pike perch (or Zander) caught on July 12, 2009 by Swiss police divers after the carnivorous fish bit several bathers in Lake Maggiore, southern Switzerland. The fish, weighing eight kilos, sowed terror by biting six bathers last week-end near Tenero at the Italian border. Two bathers needed emergency treatment in a hospital with 10 centimetres long bites. -AFP

GENEVA Police divers have ended the reign of terror of a huge fish that was attacking swimmers in a Swiss lake.


The zander, which was 70 centimetres (two feet three inches) long and weighed eight kilos (17.5 pounds), was harpooned on Sunday after it bit six swimmers over the weekend, fish warden Fabio Croci told local media.

Two swimmers were treated in hospital for bite wounds up to 10 centimetres (four inches) long after being attacked on Lac Majeur, which borders Italy, he added.

Police divers at first tried to capture the carnivorous fish with a net, but when this failed they pursued the zander with a harpoon and managed to kill it.

The meat from the captured fish was served up to tourists at the lake.

'It is quite unusual for zanders to bite humans', Croci said, adding he suspected the fish was suffering from a hormonal imbalance which could be responsible for its aggression.