Published On: Sun, Jul 8th, 2012

Pacu, Testicle-Eating Fish, Found in Illinois Lake (Photo)

Swimmers and fishermen have something to be afraid of when they are in Lake Lou Yaeger in Litchfield, Illinois as a testicle-eating fish was reportedly found in the lake.

KSDK reported that a fish with teeth was found in the lake. Initially, it was thought to be piranha. However, Jim Cadwell, the lake superintendent, consulted with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources and learned that the said fish with teeth was actually a Pacu.

Cadwell says a fisherman caught one back on June 7th and there were claims another was hooked ten days ago. Although Pacus pose no real threat to humans as they reportedly feed on aquatic vegetation and snails, reported two local men died in the river, bleeding to death, after their testicles were eaten by a fish while swimming.

After hearing the story, a British angler named Jeremy Wade went to investigate the culprit. After weeks of searching, he successfully hooked a 40-lb fish and was shocked to found that it was a Pacu fish.

Jeremy Wade holding a Pacu fish
Image Credit: SWNS

‘When I reeled it in, it had this mouth which was surprisingly human-like, it is almost like they have teeth specially made for crushing. They are like human molars and the fish have powerful jaw muscles. They are very deep bodied and solid like a carp, with strong muscles,’ he said.

“The locals told me that this thing was like a human in the water, biting at the testicles of fishermen,” he added.

Pacu is a common name used to refer to several species of omnivorous South American freshwater fish that are related to the piranha. Pacu and piranha don’t have similar teeth. Piranha have pointed, razor-sharp teeth whereas pacu have squarer, straighter teeth like a human. Because of this, Pacus are commonly sold as ‘Vegetarian Piranhas’ to home aquarium owners.

Pacus inhabit most rivers and streams in the Amazon and Orinoco river basins of lowland Amazonia. They have also recently been found in the riverine systems of Papua New Guinea, where it is believed the fish has been introduced to aid the local fishing industry.

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