Giant goldfish have become an issue in Australian rivers as researchers have discovered.
Pet owners are believed to be behind the large fish and scientists are warning of their damaging impact on natural ecosystems.
Murdoch University researchers, based in Perth, caught a goldfish that weighed roughly 2kg and grew to 30cm, according to the Independent.
Stephen Beatty, a researcher from the Centre of Fish and Fisheries at Murdoch University said: “The message is that introduced species can have unpredictable biological and ecological responses if released and the public should not introduced aquarium species into local waterways.”
Stephen told Perth Now: “They can stir up sediment, increasing turbidity, and they can resuspend nutrients through their feeding activity because they cruise along the bottom hoovering sediment which can uproot plants as well.
“The key is really preventing it and getting the message out there that people shouldn’t be releasing freshwater fish in artificial wetlands,” he said.
“Even in artificial lakes because sometimes they have underground pipes connecting them to the river.”