There is just no getting rid of the testicle-eating fish.
The pacu, a fish native to South America and known for its human-like set of teeth, has been turning up all over the world in recent months. There have been sightings in France, Denmark, Illinois and even New Jersey.
Now, a fisherman in Lake Ki, near Marysville, Wash., has reeled in yet another.
The fish always gets attention not only for its bizarre appearance, but because according to anecdotes from South America and Papua New Guinea where the fish has also been seen, the pacu sometimes uses its powerful choppers to bite off human testicles.
Ouch. But what would motivate a fish to make a meal of a man’s most sensitive bodily organs? In fact, the Pacu dines on nuts. It will leap out if the water to grab a nut in its jaws and use its fearsome teeth to crack it open.
Sometimes, reports have said the fish mistakes testicles for the food it prefers and when it does, well, the results are more than a little uncomfortable.
However, scientists say that the stories of testicle consumption are probably just that, stories.
John Denton is the latest lucky guy to have a close encounter with a pacu. He had no idea he was going to reel in the four-pound fish when he cast his line off the dock in his own back yard. It took him 20 minutes to bring the fish in.
"Bang, there it was," he recounted. "It's a pretty big fish, a big ol' herking fish."
Denton, a 40-year-old commercial painter, believes that someone kept the fish as a pet but released it into the lake when it grew too big for a home fish tank. After the catch, Denton put the fish in a container of cold water to keep it alive.
His wife then took it to the hunting and fishing supply store store where she works and the store, which has fish tans on the premises, agreed to hold on to the fish. It was still alive and healthy as of Monday afternoon.
"It looks like a really cute fish until it opens its mouth and you see its teeth," said Katie Sanford, manager of the store.
Opposing Views has been all over the testicle-eating fish story as it develops. See our earlier coverage here and here.
SOURCES: Everett Herald, Huffington Post