Redbelly piranha

• Nome científico: Pygocentrus nattereri
• Classe: Fish
• Hábitos alimentares: Carnivore
• Status de conservação: Not evaluated

Informações gerais:

Its powerful teeth can inflict severe bites. They have a reddish color, with gray head and back. There is a hierarchy within the school and has the behavior of lurking to attack the prey. An interesting fact is that the piranha group Pygocentrus lives in a state of constant fear and mutual distrust, even when everything seems calm the animals are capable of seriously injuring or even killing each other. The expression ox of piranha comes from the story in which cattle breeders, when crossing a river with piranhas, slaughter one of the cattle, already old and / or sick, and throw their body, bleeding, into the river, to attract the piranhas while themselves and the rest of the herd manage to cross the other side of the river without being disturbed.


• In nature they feed on fish, molluscs, crustaceans, insects, birds, reptiles (anaconda chicks), amphibians, rodents and carcasses left by larger animals such as otters. • At the São Paulo Aquarium they are fed tilapia and shrimp and beef muscle.

Distribuição geográfica:

They inhabit the Paraguay, Paraná, Xingu, Madeira, Negro and other rivers spread throughout South America.


Due to its high geographical distribution, it does not have major extinction threats.


When a couple is ready to spawn, they form a small territory where any fish that approach will be aggressively expelled. The couple has a much darker color, and their behavior becomes more aggressive and territorial. In their territory, the fish begin to build a nest at the bottom, eliminating all plants, removing stones and any foreign elements. When the nest is ready, the male attracts the female into the nest, where she will lay the eggs, which will be quickly fertilized by the male. After spawning, the male will protect the nest, and will chase any fish that gets too close. Sometimes the female will be expelled, but she also helps with guarding. In 2 or 3 days the orange colored eggs will hatch. In the first days of life the yolk bag will provide supplies for the fry.

Localização no Aquário de São Paulo:

Freshwater sector