These days it seems less and less likely that you’ll know what takes your line in a lake, river, or stream. Drew Patrick caught his “once-in-a-lifetime” fish in Lake Hartwell. The fish in question: a South American Pacú (pictured below). The Pacú is native to the South American tropics, where they feed on just about anything they can fit in their mouths, from fruit to dry flies and other fish. South Carolina DNR believes that the fish found its way into the lake when its original owner decided to release it into Hartwell instead of attempting to rehome it.

Photo from Drew Patrick

We hope this catch serves as a reminder to NEVER release pet fish into your local waterways.

You can read about the catch and what South Carolina DNR is doing as a response, here!


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