Off Beat Stories

Nov 18, 2009 2:30 PM by Tim Malloy

Flesh-eating piranhas found in Florida pond

Pythons, parakeets, monitor lizards, monkeys and iguanas.

What else can you find in South Florida?

How about piranhas.

The Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission is alarmed over the discovery a 14 year old boy made in October in a retention pond near West Palm Beach.

On the end of the hook was a red-bellied piranha.

To make matters worse another was discovered ten days later.

Samples of the pond have not turned up any more.

Investigators think the fish were dumped from an aquarium.

Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission biologists returned to the pond Tuesday.

They are dumping a chemical called rotenone into the water to make sure the fish are gone.

They say fisheries managers have used rotenone since 1934 by to eradicate unwanted fish without harming habitat.

Piranha are prohibited in Florida.

It is illegal possess them and anyone who does could be fined $1,000 and sentenced to a year in jail.

State biologists expect to remove dead fish from the piranha pond for up to the next four days.

They will then stock the lake with native freshwater fish.

FWC officials say a total of three piranhas have been found.

 

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