Watch the discarded goldfish grow to the size of a soccer ball in Minnesota’s waterways

BURNSVILLE, Minnesota (AP) – Officials in Minnesota have said they are finding more giant goldfish in waterways, prompting citizens to stop illegally dumping their unwanted fish in ponds and lakes.

Goldfish, which can grow to the size of a soccer ball, compete with native species for food and multiply algae in lakes. Officials from the Twin Cities suburb of Burnsville found 10 fish in Keller Lake earlier this month during a water quality survey.

On Monday, 18 additional fish were found. Some were 18 inches (46 centimeters) long and weighed around 4 pounds (1.8 kilograms).

“Please don’t release your goldfish into ponds and lakes!” ” the city said in a tweet. “They get bigger than you think and contribute to poor water quality by messing up bottom sediment and uprooting plants.”

Burnsville officials worked with Carp Solutions, a start-up company developing new technologies to control carp, a larger cousin of goldfish.

The company uses electric boat fishing to catch fish, said founder Przemek Bajer. Electric wires electrify the water, and stunned fish float to the surface to be caught and measured.

In Burnsville, the fish were finally killed.

Goldfish and carp can survive in frozen lakes and those with very poor water quality as they can live without oxygen for long periods of time, the Star Tribune reported. They also appear in healthier lakes.

“I think they’re becoming more and more common,” Bajer said.

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