A Fish With Human Teeth

By Atom Bergstrom

Atom’s Blog

Here’s something for Paleo folks to ponder.

The pacu fish feeds on tree nuts, so its teeth are very human.

Acorns were a substantial part of the ancient Greek diet.


According to “Pacu,” Wikipedia (updated Sept. 12, 2019) …

“Pacu and piranha do not have similar teeth, the main difference being jaw alignment; piranha have pointed, razor-sharp teeth in a pronounced underbite, whereas pacu have squarer, straighter teeth, which are uncannily similar to human teeth, and a less severe underbite, or a slight overbite. Pacu, unlike piranha, mainly feed on plant material and not flesh or scales.”


Is the pacu a testicle-biting fish?

No. Despite the media buzz, it’s safe for men to skinny-dip in the vicinity of a pacu.

They only eat tree nuts and fruit.


Michael Goulding (The Fishes and the Forest: Explorations in Amazonian Natural History, 1980) wrote …

“Pacu characins of the genera Mylossoma and Myleus are major seed predators of the Rio Machado flooded forests. They eat mostly seeds about 0.5-1.0 cm in greatest diameter (including nut wall) when round or semispherical; some flattened, disk-shaped seeds were considerably larger but their maximum depth was no more than about 0.5-1.0 cm, which enables the pacus to easily bite out chunks of them.”

According to the same source …

“Overall, however, the pacus probably play only a very minimal role in seed dispersal in the Rio Machado flooded forests. They are seed predators par excellence.”

As were the ancient Greeks.

'A Fish With Human Teeth' has 1 comment

  1. September 17, 2019 @ 2:22 pm Atom

    Re: So, shouldn’t we be eating wild Alaskan salmon?

    The orange roughy is the lowest in DHA, and can live 150 years.

    Ray Peat said 200 years.


    A wild salmon is extremely lucky if it can reach 8 or 9 years.

    Orange roughy oil is a treatment for dry, scaly skin.


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