Piranhas with human-like teeth in Dewey Lake fuel concern over invasive fish

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Friday 03 December 2059 97486 Shares

Three large vegetarian piranhas with human-like teeth have been discovered in Kentucky , amid growing concern among wildlife officials over tropical and invasive fish infiltrating the eastern Kentucky region.

Over the past month, two red-bellied pacu piranhas have been caught in Dewey and one other in the Paintsville Lake area in Kentucky . They were probably illegally dumped by people who didn’t want to keep them in their aquariums any longer.

The tropical fish, imported from South America for home aquariums, prefers not to tear apart carcasses like other piranhas. Instead, it has square, blunt teeth that look much like human dentures, which it uses to nibble upon nuts and seeds.

The fish, which can measure more than 30in, are warm water creatures and are unlikely to survive in the colder environment of Michigan. But wildlife officials are grappling with a growing threat of an invasion of the Lakes by introduced fish species.

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