Pet Goldfish Released Into Fresh Water Are Growing To Enormous Size, ‘Mucking Up’ Ecosystem

Screenshot/ YouTube/ Minnesota Bound

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Minnesota officials pleaded for people to stop disposing their unwanted goldfish into lakes or ponds after discovering they have grown to enormous sizes and are “mucking up” the ecosystem.

The City of Burnsville tweeted photos July 9 of overgrown goldfish that were once pets but are now harming the water quality of the ponds and lakes they have been set free in.

The city has recently partnered up with neighboring Apple Valley and Crap Solutions to direct a survey on Keller Lake to study the populations of “invasive goldfish,” according to Newsweek.

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) listed goldfish as a “regulated invasive species.” Although legal to own, sell and transport, the DNR says they must not be put into “free-living state” such as local, public waters.

The DNR stressed the fact that goldfish can reproduce rapidly, which can contribute to the poor water quality in the lakes and ponds. The amount of goldfish can increase the number of plants being uprooted, which disturbs the bottoms of the lakes. (RELATED: Animal Shelters Seeing Increase In People Abandoning Pets As Pandemic Lockdowns And Restrictions End)

A Facebook post by the City of Burnsville suggested finding a goldfish a new home instead of disposing it into a local lake or pond.