The Amazon rain forest has an incredible variety of wildlife, with hundreds of different species of birds, amphibians and mammals. And of course there’s the best-known fish of Amazonia, the piranha, with a well-deserved bad reputation in spite of their relatively small size. Most of these species have a strong, narrow body, usually measuring between 14 and 26 centimeters, although some can grow to over 40 cm. Piranhas have a prominent head, very strong jaws and a single row of teeth in the upper and lower part of their mouth. They are very aggressive, with an insatiable appetite for flesh, and the sharp teeth and strong bite can cause a lot of damage. Some species swim together in large schools, and in the movies they have often been portrayed as a perfectly organized mob of bloodthirsty assassins. The fact is that piranhas rarely attack humans or animals larger than them, and their attacks are seldom truly serious.
A customary activity in cruises on the Amazon is fishing piranhas. The dry season runs from July to October, being a dangerous time to fish them because they are ravenous and more aggressive than usual.
There are no special requirements for fishing a piranha other than using bait—sometimes you can manage with a wire hook and a chunk of fresh meat. Piranhas go after blood in the water, because they have a sharp sense of smell, or when a tentative prey is splashing in the water. Once you catch a piranha you have be careful when handling it, because of their razor-sharp teeth.
Then you can prepare them grilled, fried or even use them to make soup. Piranhas are very tasty, but watch out for their little spines.
Piranha fishing is an Amazon classic. Are you ready to experience something truly unforgettable?
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