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Red-Bellied Pacu

Scientific Name

Piaractus brachypomus (Cuvier, 1817) (ITIS)

Common Name

Red-bellied pacu, pirapitinga

Native To

South America (Di Santo et al. 2018)

Date of U.S. Introduction

Individual specimens have been caught since the 1960s, but no reproducing populations have yet become established in the U.S. (NAS Database)

Means of Introduction

Probably through aquarium releases or fish farm escapes (Di Santo et al. 2018)


Environmental impact is unknown (NAS Database)

Red-bellied pacu

Red-bellied pacu, adults


Photo by U.S. Geological Survey

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Distribution / Maps / Survey Status

Selected Resources

The section below contains highly relevant resources for this species, organized by source.

Federal Government