BENTONVILLE (KFSM) – A piranha was caught in Lake Bentonville last week, according to the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission. Lake Bentonville is on Southwest 1st Street near the Bentonville Municipal Airport. A Bella vista woman posted pictures of the piranha on a public Facebook page Saturday (May 2) evening. Her name is Dutch-Kathy Barnett, and she told 5NEWS her friend Roger Headley caught the fish. She said Headley caught the fish, mistaking it for a large Perch, and it almost bit his finger when the hook was pulled out of the fish’s mouth.
Headley spoke to 5NEWS and said he was shocked that he would find something like that in Lake Bentonville. Barnett said the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission brought a state biologist to the lake on Friday (May 1) to confirm the fish was a piranha. Army Corps Engineer Alan Bland said they find piranhas in local lakes often. He said people will dump their aquariums when they are tired of taking care of the fish. Bland said piranhas are not dangerous to swimmers when they are found in our area, because the cold water temperatures make them sluggish and non-aggressive. Bland said a piranha can only survive a few days before dying. He said the last confirmed case of a piranha in Northwest Arkansas was found at Beaver Lake at the Hickory Creek Marina in 2014. AGFC said it is illegal to dump piranhas in public lakes. FULL STORY