Fisherman Pulls Red-Bellied Piranha From Canadian Lake
A red-bellied piranha has been found in a lake in the Canadian province of British Columbia.
A fisherman on Westwood Lake, near Nanaimo, pulled the tropical fish out of the popular swimming area. This is the second piranha that has been found in British Columbia this summer.
A Piranha In Canada?
The BC Conservation Service released a statement telling lake-goers not to worry, as the piranhas were probably unwanted pets that were released illegally. Piranhas, being from tropical climates, would be unlikely to survive the winter in Canada.
CBC reminded readers that releasing aquatic pets constitutes releasing a potentially invasive species. The introduction of such species may prompt ecological destruction, as the animal introduced may not have natural predators in its new habitat and can threaten the survival of native species.
Releasing an invasive species comes with hefty legal repercussions in Canada, with a fine of up to $100,000 CAD ($75,556 USD) and may result in up to 12 months imprisonment.
Keeping Exotic Pets
The practice of keeping exotic pets has become a faux pas in many animal-conscious circles. In addition to the threat of species invasion, animals who are classified as exotic pets are unused to human interaction, meaning their domestication can be a stressful or unhealthy experience.