Fisherman finds testicle-biting pacu in Paris’ Seine River

The pacu is known for its powerful, human-like teeth that can crush nutshells - or human testicles. Credit: Metro France / Paris Police
The pacu is known for its powerful, human-like teeth that can crush nutshells — or human testicles.
Credit: Metro France/Paris Police

Sacrebleu! A testicle-chomping fish has been spotted in Paris’ Seine River after the same species sent shockwaves through Scandinavia in August.

A French fisherman found the pacu fish, a relative of the piranha, at the end of his line last Friday. The species is native to the Amazon River and is famous for its big, pearly whites that look like human teeth.

The Prefecture of Police of Paris released a punchy item in its newsletter with the headline “The teeth of the Seine!” The author wrote, “Amazing, and yet this is not an isolated case. Specialist divers sometimes encounter strange inhabitants like a python or an alligator snapping turtle.” The author added that these unusual animals are usually abandoned pets of irresponsible owners who set them free in the Seine.

Henrik Carl, a fish expert at the Danish National History Museum, told the Telegraph, “There have been incidents in other countries, such as Papua New Guinea, where some men have had their testicles bitten off. They bite because they’re hungry, and testicles site nicely in their mouth.”

Pacus have teeth that are great for chowing down on vegetables, fruits and nuts. “They have very powerful jaws that they use to crack the nuts,” said Lars Skou Olsen of Copenhagen’s Blue Planet Aquarium to the National Geographic. “That’s no problem for them.”

Pacus resemble their piranha cousins but get much bigger as they mature and can become as heavy as 40 to 50 pounds.

The species of fish made headlines a few weeks ago after a fisherman found one in the strait between Denmark and Sweden. Male swimmers were jokingly warned to keep on their swim trunks, but experts agree the likelihood of encountering a pacu is very slim.


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