Girl snags fish with quite a bite

Rare pacu caught in Oklahoma lake

South Florida Sun-Sentinel (Sunday) - - Nation & World - By Ken Miller As­so­ci­ated Press

OKLAHOMA CITY — An 11-year-old girl has quite the fish tale: A rare pacu with hu­man-like teeth chomped down on the worm at the end of her line while she was fish­ing with her grand­par­ents and brother in an Oklahoma lake.

But Kennedy Smith isn’t ex­ag­ger­at­ing when she de­scribes her catch.

Caddo County Game War­den Tyler Howser confirms that the fish was a pacu, a rel­a­tive of the pi­ranha that is na­tive to South Amer­ica and can grow up to 50 pounds.

Kennedy’s fish weighed 1 pound, Howser said.

Kennedy said she ini­tially was “re­ally ex­cited” to have caught a fish last Sun­day in Fort Cobb Lake, 55 miles south­west of Oklahoma City. But she was shocked when it bit her grand­mother. “I was con­fused be­cause I knew that fish with teeth are not nor­mal. It was weird,” Kennedy said.

San­dra Wha­ley suf­fered no ill-ef­fects from the bite.

Howser said the fish was likely bought as a pet and was re­leased when it grew too large for the aquar­ium.

Pacu are con­sid­ered an in­va­sive species that can de­stroy the na­tive fish ecosys­tem, so Kennedy’s fish was taken by the Oklahoma De­part­ment of Wildlife Con­ser­va­tion and de­stroyed.


Kennedy Smith, 11, of Lind­say, Okla., hooked a pacu, a rel­a­tive of the pi­ranha, last week. The fish bit her grand­mother.

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