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(Scotsman)   Trip to Edinburgh Butterfly Park goes horribly awry for 18-month-old when the pirahna-type fish attack   ( divider line
    More: Scary  
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10337 clicks; posted to Main » on 12 Jun 2004 at 2:01 AM (13 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»

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2004-06-12 02:04:23 AM  
ouch! poor little kid. :(

/got nothin'
2004-06-12 02:04:34 AM  
I'm sorry but that headline made me laugh.
2004-06-12 02:04:58 AM  
Todders and Pirahnas taste like chicken...
2004-06-12 02:05:24 AM  
That will teach her to not stick her fingers where they don't belong.

/sorry lol
2004-06-12 02:06:22 AM  
and where were her parents? I assume, with carnivorous fish about, that there was a sign.

And somebody, feed those fish a little more regularly!
2004-06-12 02:08:22 AM  
I hope this won't affect their cobra petting zoo.
2004-06-12 02:10:11 AM  
1) Why is there a pond of pirahnas within easy reach of a small child?

2) From the article: "Piranha expert Professor Monty Priede, of Aberdeen University, said she was lucky her finger had not been bitten clean off. He said the pain would have been similar to "getting a finger caught in a vice" and said the fish were just as deadly as their cousins."

He's not only an expert on piranhas, he's an expert on comparing relative levels of finger pain?
2004-06-12 02:11:08 AM  
All this Scottish and Pirhana

/If it's no Scotch... it's crap!
2004-06-12 02:11:39 AM  
"Excuse me, but is that a grizzly bear inside the petting zoo?"
2004-06-12 02:12:14 AM  
The "pirahna expert" obviously isn't a pacu expert. Pacus may look a lot like pirahnas, but they definitely don't have the aggression issues or teeth of their infamous cousins. This was just an unlucky coincidence.

/media scare-mongering sucks
2004-06-12 02:13:39 AM  
Pacus are often mistaken for piranhas. They do look similar, but the Pacu have a quiet nature and are vegetarians. The fish probably thought the kids finger was a nice juicy carrot.
2004-06-12 02:13:55 AM  
A family friend's youngest burned a finger on a stove as a toddler and after that, anything his parents didn't want him to touch, they told him it was "hot."

That could work here now, too: "No, no, honey--FISH! FISH!"
2004-06-12 02:15:24 AM  
the words "horribly" and "awry" just belong together, yes?
2004-06-12 02:25:14 AM  
Who the Hell keeps carniverous fish in their butterfly garden?
2004-06-12 02:25:35 AM  
Sara_iffic: The fish probably thought the kids finger was a nice juicy carrot.

Obviously then the kid was a relative of that leather jacketed farker in a recent photoshop competition. You know, the one with the carrot for a thumb. Oh come on - you KNOW. He was doing a magic trick. Look he had some weird left thumb carrot thing going on. Take me word for it... now get into bed.
2004-06-12 02:28:44 AM  
[image from too old to be available]
2004-06-12 02:29:39 AM  
I'd hardly call a Pacu deadly. They may look like a pirahna but it's a stretch to say they act like one. Heck, you can get pacus at pretty much any petstore. Even petsmart or Walmart. I'm going to agree with SSr0dent and call it an unfortunate accident.

Fingertips in water = floating peas
2004-06-12 02:30:16 AM  
OK, first, why was the pond not fenced off? Second why were there no warning signs? That's kinda like having a kiddy park here in Florida, unguarded, with alligators in it. Thirdly, whatthehell is it with people INSISTING on importing these damn deadly fish? With a name like Butterfly Park, I'd not expect it to have anything really harmful in it, though, as usual, the Scotsman report left out a lot of information.

Here in the States, laws require protecting citizens from such things because the government, while basically greedy and self centered, probably reads the Darwin Awards and likes to protect voters. Plus, lawyers are just lining up for a chance to sue over anything here.
2004-06-12 02:33:53 AM  
Yeah, I'm a call scaremongering shenanigans...
2004-06-12 02:35:39 AM  
...but Rik01 - the Pacu isn't really a damn deadly fish. If the kid didn't have carrot fingers, there wouldn't have been a problem. But no... her parents wouldn't spring for REAL fingers when her original fingers got bitten off by bears when they visited Yellowstone last summer.
2004-06-12 02:36:29 AM  
Killer fish?
a 5 inch killer fish..... right......
2004-06-12 02:37:45 AM  
You can buy Pacu at some pet stores. They are "vegetarian pirhana" so the only way they got bit was because they thought it was food
2004-06-12 02:38:54 AM  
Riki01, would you fence off a goldfish pond? Goldfish aren't known for eating fingers but if they think finger=fish pellet, they'll bite. It *is* unfortunate the pacu thought her finger was a fish pellet or vegetable because the pacu has strong jaws. But they aren't for eating fingers. This is like calling one specific breed of dog dangerous when one hungry pup bites your hamburger covered hand.

These eamples might be a stretch. I am just trying to impress the fact that Pacus aren't deadly by nature.
2004-06-12 02:39:43 AM  
The Royal Hospital for Sick Children was a smart choice, as opposed to the Royal Hospital for Perfectly Healthy Children who are Just Trying to get out of Phys. Ed.

/more scared of the ninja butterflies than the biting fish
2004-06-12 02:42:09 AM  
Should have stocked the pond with mantis shrimp instead...
2004-06-12 03:26:29 AM  
Pirahnas at the butterfly park? I'll never understand Europe.
2004-06-12 03:27:19 AM  
Surgilarity ensues.
2004-06-12 03:32:26 AM  
I guess he's lucky it wasn't Bob-For-Apples Day.
2004-06-12 03:33:09 AM  
[image from too old to be available]
2004-06-12 03:41:20 AM  
To (badly) quote Scott (Far Side) Adams:

"Why is the amount of time that it takes to skeletonize a cow used as a standard of measurement?"

He was speaking of piranha, not pacu. Pacu probably take longer to skeletonize a cow. Even less time to skeletonize an 18 month old child, though.

/yes, I read the posts about pacu being vegans and all that, but maybe they thought the cow or kid was made out of tofu.
//Where the HELL is my beer?
2004-06-12 03:44:14 AM  
Shiat. Not Scott Adams. My bad. I must be getting drunk from the beer I want to drink. Gary Larson.
2004-06-12 03:55:43 AM  
Captain hook would be proud
2004-06-12 05:10:25 AM  
there needs to be a BABY DUMBASS tag
2004-06-12 05:15:41 AM  
Fast forward 5 years. Third day of school. "She was so enjoying school, until we went to the cafeteria to have fish fingers for lunch..."
2004-06-12 05:50:21 AM  
All I have to say: Pacu is damn tasty.

When I was a kid, we used to fish them. Sadly, about 10 years ago, it became a fashionable food in Japan, and now they are almost extinct in the wild.

You can buy farm pacu, though, and it's still good.

On the other hand: yes, the pacu has a scary mouth, but it's not an aggressive fish, so this was just a bizarre accident. Now, if it was a palometa (which *is* a piranha, only smaller, and more solitary)... I did get bitten by one. Boy did that hurt.
2004-06-12 06:16:29 AM  
Pacu aren't nearly extinct in the wild. They're quite common in their native Amazon River.

Besides, I blame the parents.
2004-06-12 07:04:00 AM  
"The Royal Hospital for Sick Children"

Does anyone else detect any redundancy in that name?
2004-06-12 10:06:07 AM  
The kid was probably trying to grab one up like kids tend to do, and it defended itsself from the young darwin nominee.
2004-06-12 12:29:40 PM  
Piranna ... Razor Sharp Teeth.... Carnivirous in nature

Pacu ... Hard plates in mouth..Vegetarian by nature

Children... Naturally curious

Parents.... Were apparently Idiots


/also obvious the Piranna "Expert" doesn't know Chiat !
2004-06-12 01:02:28 PM  
"Never get out of the boat man. Never get out the boat!!
2004-06-12 01:22:39 PM  
"The "pirahna expert" obviously isn't a pacu expert. Pacus may look a lot like pirahnas, but they definitely don't have the aggression issues or teeth of their infamous cousins. This was just an unlucky coincidence."

Try telling that to the parents.
2004-06-12 03:14:45 PM  
That really bites!

/in possession of absolute zilch.
2004-06-12 04:02:12 PM  
2004-06-12 05:11:42 PM  
Curiosity doesn't just kill cats.
It apparently maims toddlers too.
2004-06-12 06:13:21 PM  
cj69m -

I would, given the opportunity, but they'd probably be in such an emotional, irrational state that nothing I said would make any difference to them. For the rest of thier lives and their child's life and probably their grandchildren's lives, the fear generated by this one incident compounded by humanity's general inability to understand and forgive will likely affect this family and any pacu they come across for generations. Your comment is my evidence.
2004-06-12 06:36:28 PM  
Its diet is based on fruits, vegetation and insects that fall into the water. Although peaceful, you need to be careful because it has powerful teeth that can really hurt an arm with a bite. I knew a full grown Black Pacu, that lived for many years in a local fish shop. When he finally died the owner was extremely upset, but couldnt resist and ate it.
2004-06-12 07:53:00 PM  
So, if pacu are not dangerous, can you place them in a tank with other (smaller and tastier) fish?
2004-06-12 08:21:16 PM  
Jebus H. Christ!
I just read biggeek's post... those things can get to be two feet long and weigh fifty pounds! No wonder it nearly took her arm off!
/I once had a nasty run in with a blue gill. They also mimic Piranhas, in that they live underwater and had teeth.
2004-06-12 08:23:35 PM  
And by arm, I mean finger.
2004-06-12 08:55:14 PM  
Sounds like another lawsuit to me
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