Although it belongs in the piranha family, the pacu (Piaractus brachypomus) is not as agressive as its more notorious cousin. However, it has powerful dentition capable of causing serious bites. The danger does not deter the Amazonian fisherman who considers the pacu to be a tasty fish and will be able to fetch a high price at market for his catch. The commercial value of the pacu has led to its consideration as a candidate for aquaculture in the Amazon region.
The juvenile pacu looks remarkably similar to an adult red-bellied piranha (compare photo). This similarity may be a defensive adaptation to scare off predators.
Pacu possess powerful dentition capable of inflicting a serious bite. However, these fish are not aggressive and possess such teeth possibly to crush seeds that fall from forest plants.