(BENTONVILLE, Ark.) — The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission has confirmed what a local fisherman suspected when he caught a toothy fish last week – that it really was a piranha.
Roger Headley was fishing on Lake Bentonville on Friday when he caught the fish, which he thought was a large perch, ABC News affiliate KHBS/KHOG-TV reports.
Headley told the television station the fish actually did try to bite him.
“I knew he kind of looked funny and when I reached down and tried to take the hook out of his mouth that’s when he opened up his mouth and tried to bite me,” he said.
The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission lists piranhas among species of exotic animals that are unlawful to import or transport.
Game and Fish experts told KHBS/KHOG-TV that piranhas, which usually are dumped by former pet owners, are not a threat because they don’t last long in Arkansas’ cold waters.
Headley said it was luck that the fish wasn’t caught by a young child.
“If a little kid would have caught him or something he could have lost a finger or anything,” he told KHBS/KHOG-TV.
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