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Red Piranha

Information About Red Piranha


Picture of Mounted Red Piranah

This mounted red piranah was bought on the Amazon River.

2006 Ronnie Garrison licensed to About.com
Red Piranha (Pygocentrus nattereri)(picture) are a native fish of the Amazon River Basin in South America and are notorious for their feeding habits.

  • Red Piranha Description - Oval shapped body with a blunt head. The lower jaw sticks out and both jaws have a sinle row of teeth. They have a red belly from which they get their name.

  • Red Piranha Size - Average size is six to ten inches long weighing 1/2 to 2 pounds but some have been caught that weighed nine pounds and were 13 inches long.

  • Red Piranha Distribution - Native to the Amazon River basin and the Parana River Basin in South America

  • What Red Piranha Eat - Carnivores, they will eat any kind of meat from insects to animals in the water.

  • Eating Red Piranha - Red Piranha are very good to eat and are highly sought after as a food source.

  • Catching Red Piranha - They will hit a variety of live and artificial baits, often attacking plugs bigger than they are.

  • Red Piranha Problems - they are a danger to swimmers and livestock in the rivers but not a serious problem. It is rare for them to attack a big animal or person unless there is blood in the water.

Piranha are shown in movies running in big schools and eating everything in the water. That is true, to some extent, but people in the areas where they live swim in waters with them. Unless there is blood in the water they are not likely to attack a person. There are several kinds of piranha but the Red Piranha are the ones of movie fame that eat everything in the water.
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