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Pet owners warned over ‘giant’ goldfish problem in US lakes

Mama Nature has been pulling out all the stops lately and has presented us with another fish problem, GIANT GOLDFISH.

Photos of giant goldfish pulled from a Minnesota Lake have gone viral on social media, prompting the city of Burnsville to warn residents about releasing their unwanted pet fish into the wild.

More than two dozen goldfish have been found around Keller Lake in Burnsville over the past month, and some are larger than a football, weighing up to 1.8 kilograms.

Giant goldfish found in us lake
Image: City of Burnsville

The town’s officials took to Twitter on Friday to remind locals not to dump goldfish, saying that they: “grow bigger than you think and contribute to poor water quality by mucking up the bottom sediments and uprooting plants“.

According to Live Science, pet goldfish in small tanks tend to stay about 2.5 to 5.1 cm long but can top around 40 cm in length and weigh 2 kg in the wild.

Jennifer Bowman, an aquatic ecologist for the Royal Botanical Gardens in Canada, said that goldfish numbers in the wild have “really spiked since 2015“.

It’s getting a lot worse. They are very successful when they get together; a couple of goldfish can get access to a pond and you have thousands the next year.”

In one single marsh near Hamilton, her group has counted 2,000 goldfish.

They’re “a little more tolerant of some of the chemicals in the water that would impact our native fish,” she added, allowing the invasive species to proliferate.

Nick Lapointe, a conservation biologist with the Canadian Wildlife Federation, said that as bottom feeders, goldfish stir up mud and sediment at the bottom of freshwater lakes.

This clouds the water and makes it more difficult for plants and native fish species to thrive.

Goldfish can be over a foot long. They eat fish eggs and snails and compete with our native species,” Lapointe told CBC News.

And the US isn’t the only country to suffer from savage goldfish.

In 2017, the Munich city council in Germany said shoals of goldfish were starving out all rivals in local ponds and lakes.
The problem got so bad, the council threatened to fine anyone caught releasing their pets into public waters.

Large goldfish have been found in the UK’s wild waters as well.

In 2010, a British teenager pulled a 2.2 kg, 40.6 cm fish from a lake in Dorset.

And I don’t know about you, but I’d rather not see a modern-day Godzilla fish walking on out of those lakes here in AUS, so let’s keep them in the tanks, mmkay?