Six people have been killed and another two wounded in a shooting in Germany that appears to have resulted from a family dispute, police said.

A man called police shortly after 12.45pm and told them he had killed several people in the south-western town of Rot am See, regional police chief Reiner Moeller said.

READ MORE: Doomsday clock set at '100 seconds to midnight' as scientists warn of low error margin

Police kept the man on the line and, when they arrived at the scene several minutes later, arrested a 26-year-old German national as the suspect in the killings, Mr Moeller said.

Officers found the bodies of six people – three women and three men – in and behind a building where a bar is located.

The suspect’s mother and father were among the dead, the police chief said.

Another two people were hurt and one of them has life-threatening injuries, Mr Moeller said.

The suspect also threatened two children, aged 12 and 14.

He had a licence to own firearms as a shooting club member, Mr Moeller said.

READ MORE: Search underway for British men missing in Spanish islands after storm

The police chief said the motive is not known but authorities are treating it as a “family drama”.

Rot am See is located about 170 kilometres (105 miles) north west of Munich.

It is a town of some 5,300 people in a rural area.