Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Fishes with Human Teeth

The sea is known to have a few strange and crazy looking animals living in the deep. It’s not really a big shock to find strange and unknown animals from the ocean since we’ve only explored a fraction of it. But it’s not only the ocean that has these strange species. We can also find peculiar ones in rivers and lakes.

The Pacu fish is a common fish species that can be found in major rivers in South America. These fishes are actually related to the more well-known piranhas that lurk in the Amazon’s rivers. Many people mistake these fishes as Piranhas since they look very alike, but what makes these fishes unique is their row of human-like teeth.
They swim rampantly in the Orinoco and Amazon River systems in the Amazonian lowlands, but some of have been reported to have swum as far off as Papua New Guinea. Another major difference between Pacus and Piranhas is their diet. Piranhas are carnivorous while Pacus are omnivorous. In fact, they prefer to munch on vegetation. Their flat, square teeth help them munch on seeds and nuts that fall into the river from the plants in the riverbanks.

Some time ago, these fishes became controversial, being called “testicle-biters”, since they apparently left some Papua New Guineamen castrated. But these reports were confirmed as falls and the natural behavior of these fishes don’t really fit into the incident so there’s absolutely nothing to worry about when you’re in the water with them.

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