A fisherman’s latest catch had a rather unusual look about it when pulled from a local pond, unlike most fish one would catch for supper; this one had what appeared to be human-like teeth.
Juan Gallo caught the Pacu fish in a duck pond at Lucchesi Park in Petaluma, California; he said that it managed to chew through the fishing line when he pulled it out of the water.
Gallo was able to prevent the animal from escaping, and he plans to donate the catch to the state Department of Fish and Wildlife. He said if they don’t want it, he might have it stuffed.
“It landed on the dirt and you could tell it wasn’t anything we had seen before,” Gallo said, describing his unusual catch.
The freshwater fish, originally from the Amazon, is related to the flesh-eating Piranhas of South America, although their teeth are quite different.
Piranhas have pointy, razor sharp teeth, and feed mostly on other fish and small animals that venture into the water.
Meanwhile, the Pacus have straight and square teeth, very similar to human teeth, and usually only eat plants and small fish.
The Pacu fish is also bigger than their distant cousin, growing to around three feet and weighing around 55 pounds fully grown.
Pacu fish are legal in most of the U.S. and are available at local pet and aquarium stores, yet owners are often unaware of the size that Pacus can grow to and dump them in nearby lakes, which then harms natural ecosystems.