Colossoma bidens

Pacu swim in the slow-moving waters of rainforests of the upper and middle Amazon River in Brazil and Peru, and in the Orinoco River of Venezuela and Columbia. They are herbivores.

Pacu have been found in 19 U.S. states, as far north as Montana and Minnesota, most likely aquarium releases.

Pacu behavior and facts

  • Pacu eat decaying plants and fruit fallen off trees.
  • They are harvested for food in their native range.
  • They have powerful teeth can inflict serious bites. They are a cousin of the piranha; juveniles are often mistaken for piranhas.
  • This species is a popular aquarium fish.

Vital statistics

  • Length: 24 to 28 inches


Not listed

Pacu, the Oregon Zoo and you

At the zoo, pacu live in the Amazon Flooded Forest exhibit where they eat a prepared diet high in vegetable matter.