Last week the Loudoun Times-Mirror reported that snakeheads have made it past a barrier scientists previously thought impossible: Great Falls. Lester Thorton Jr. caught one of the Asian-native monsters near White's Ferry, which means that snakeheads are basically unstoppable; they've already stymied ichthyologists by adapting to the salinity of the Chesapeake, and now they've figured out how to get past rapids that kill people every year.
For four years after their discovery in a pond in Crofton, Md., snakeheads dominated local media, spreading a fear of the slimy, semi-amphibious creatures that has sadly dissipated as Washingtonians have learned to fear other things. TBD wants to bring the terror back. Welcome to Snakehead Week. You can prepare by watching some of the best videos about snakeheads that the Internet has to offer.
Night of the Snakehead Fish (2003) "Ripped from last summer's headlines," the video proclaims, and that's just where the problems start. I can't tell if the Richard A. Lester movie this grainy trailer promotes was ever actually made, but from the way the camera lingers on a park ranger warning some women to stay away from a lake, I kind of hope the answer is no. The IMDB page for the film was updated by Richard Lester and says its budget was $1,500, which is not the only thing that seems high.
RELATED: "Night of the Snakehead FISH," the music video from the film. Starring Richard B. Lester (relationship to director unclear), there's no snakehead content until 1:12, when the chorus begins: “No one / Can beat the snakehead fish.” The video has clips from the film, but they mostly seem to show people going about their days. However, at 3:07, Lester licks a severed hand.
"Night heron eating snakehead fish": YouTube has lots of videos of snakeheads eating things in tanks. They make me kind of queasy. This video, shot in the wild, is a reminder that "top-level predator" is a relative term.
This evolutionary lesson also takes place in a far clumsier video by Jeremy Wade from the Animal Planet show River Monsters, who tries to make it seem as if catching a snakehead is as dangerous as snatching a cub from a grizzly.
Snakehead Terror: This actual film features snakeheads busting through boats and munching on swimmers. It stars Carol Alt, a noted raw-foodist. Is there a connection?
Swarm of the Snakehead: More like it. A woman battles a snakehead in a car and in a bathroom. Feet are eaten. Eastern Shore accents can be heard. I actually want to see this.
BONUS: A report on the film from CineMaryland:
"Snakeheads in Virginia": A very informative video from the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries that should make Jeremy Wade feel pretty stupid. In it, VGDIF fisheries biologist John Odenkirk makes a surprising argument in favor of the fish: “If you wanted to list the attributes of a desirable food- and sportfish, you look at the Northern Snakehead and there you go.”
"Invasion of the Snakeheads!": Despite its title, this National Geographic video, too, makes a case for measured consideration of the snakehead.
"Snakehead out of tank": Attention people who say these things cannot walk: This Dutchman begs to differ. BONUS: includes a Dr. Dre tune.
"Scott Broom Invasive Species": Broom, a WUSA reporter then with Baltimore’s WMAR-TV, catches a snakefish with area angler Steve Chaconas. Because sometimes it is good to see humans show those slimy invaders who's boss.