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Feeding studies have shown that other fish make up the majority of the muskies diet, 95-98% of the muskies diet consists of other fish. However, at times - muskies will also eat crayfish and insects, amphibians such as frogs and salamanders, small mammals, and waterfowl. Muskies are a predatory fish species and like all predatory fish - they are opportunists.

Muskies generally favor soft bodied fish which are also abundant and larger in size. A muskies preferred diet would consist of soft-finned, high protein species such as suckers, tullibee, ciscoes, bullheads, carp, and minnows.

Muskie food sources



Other fish

Insects

Crayfish

Amphibians

Waterfowl

Mammals


Muskies impact on other game fish:

Much is said by anglers about the fear of muskies wiping out other game fish populations - in particular, the walleye. However, the findings from numerous studies have shown that while a muskie will eat walleye from time to time, they don't prefer walleye or most other game fish. In fact, the prey muskies prefer often tends to be the exact type of fish that anglers don't want in the lakes anyway such as carp, bullheads, and suckers.

Many anglers have stories of a muskie attacking a bass or walleye as the angler is pulling it close to the boat. This leads to speculation that muskies prefer this type of fish as part of its normal diet. However, most studies suggest that this isn't true and that these coincidences are more relatable to the fact that the muskie is a predatory fish which tend to take advantage of struggling fish they see in the water - such as a fish on the end of a line.