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Friday, 16 May 2014

Prussian Pirhanas

You can always tell when we are approaching the 'Silly Season' (a term by the way, that the German Press have adopted as 'Sommerloch' literally 'silly summer'), because you get the sort of stories that just maybe wouldn't make the main news normally

In Germany, the stories follow much the same style as those in the UK. In 1994, there was 'Sammy the Cayman', a small crocodile who escaped from its owner and made it in to a quarry in the Lower Rhine near Dormagen. he remained 'on the run' for several days, but was eventually was recovered from the lake. He was then presented to the local zoo when no one claimed him.

But the 'silly season' stories are an all year phenomenon, but of course we don't always hear of them .... so for example in March this year, there was a tale of the Piranhas in the lakes ..... well one lake. According to the tales circulating on both the web and local German press, a  local 'hobby breeder' is said to have been breeding 'black piranhas' as pets, but then the numbers of the Amazonian biting fish got too large for her tanks. So she took a large number of the fish to the nearby 'Phoenix Lake', and surreptitiously deposited her excess piranhas (said to number sixty fish).

Black Piranhas Are Big Fish
 
All might have been well, but she was spotted by a casual acquaintance, and the man reported the matter to the police who investigated .... however the figure of '60 fish' is not so easy to find, when you consider that the lake is around1.2-kilometer-long, and was formed in 2011 in the Ruhr area, on the fallow site of a former steelworks. So perhaps unsurprisingly they have not spotted any piranha in the lake. And with the lake water temperature at a chilly ten degrees centigrade, the local water works manager said that they "do not see an acute danger" of the fish surviving. 

So now there are either 60 piranhas swimming around in Phoenix Lake .... or 60 dead piranhas.  'The truth is still unclear', local police have said, while others say that 'The Truth is Out There'.

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