Giant goldfish found in Niagara River prompts warning to community: 'Never flush your fish!'

Don’t flush your fish.

That’s what non-profit Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper in New York is advising people against after posting a picture on Twitter of a giant goldfish that had been caught in the Niagara River.

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“This 14-inch #goldfish was caught in the Niagara River, just downstream of the wastewater treatment plant. If you cannot keep your pet, please return it to the store instead of flushing or releasing,” the tweet read.

The photo of the large fish reportedly dates back to a few years ago when a worker for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife found the fish during a sampling run, WKBW reported. But it was recently resurfaced as a way to educate those in the community.

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According to the Waterkeeper’s Facebook, goldfish end up in the Niagara River typically after a heavy rain event because of the city’s combined sewer overflows, which can cause things like pet fish – as well as bacteria and waste – to end up in the waterways.

According to the Waterkeeper’s Facebook, goldfish end up in the Niagara River typically after a heavy rain event because of the city’s combined sewer overflows, which can cause things like pet fish – as well as bacteria and waste – to end up in the waterways. (Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper Facebook)

"We want to remind people that anything they flush down the toilet may end up in the water because of our sewer overflow problem in Buffalo," says Chris Murawski, Director of Community Engagement at Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper to WKBW.

According to the Waterkeeper’s Facebook, goldfish end up in the Niagara River typically after a heavy rain event because of the city’s combined sewer overflows.

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“Goldfish can survive year-round in our watershed and can destroy the habitat of native fish. Scientists estimate that tens of millions of Goldfish now live in the Great Lakes. If you cannot keep your pet, please return it to the store instead of flushing or releasing it,” the Facebook post read.