Allegheny County officials are wondering how a piranha got into North Park Lake.
In a media release, the Allegheny County Health Department said a a woman and her son found a red-bellied piranha while fishing at the lake.
When the fish was taken off the hook, it flipped back into the water.
According to the release, the fish most likely came from someone’s aquarium and either outgrew the tank or was no longer wanted.
The Allegheny County Parks director, Andrew Baechle, said it’s unfortunate that someone possibly released the fish into the lake.
“It’s also an opportunity to remind members of the public that animals and pets should never be brought to the parks and let go. It’s not good for the park, animals or our residents,” said Baechle.
Officials said this was the first report of a piranha in North Park Lake.
The Health Department said piranhas are omnivores and typically eat insects, worms, fish and plants. The greatest chance of a person being hurt by a piranha is being bitten while trying to remove a hook from its jaw.