Last month, biologists were stunned by the discovery of several Asian snakehead fish in Meadow Lake in the borough of Queens. A total of five snakeheads were caught, including one 28 inches long, while the scientists conducted a routine sampling of the fish in the lake.
The Department of Environmental Conservation considers the northern snakehead fish to be a top predator. Known for its insatiable appetite and rows of sharp teeth, the native Asian fish can devour every fish in a pond or lake where it lives if left unchecked.
The Asian snakehead fish first sparked concern when they were discovered living in a Maryland pond in 2002. They are said to be able to breathe air and walk on land.
New York officials have said their first priority is to determine how severe the infestation is.
The appearance of the voracious fish comes just one month after the New York State Invasive Species task force released a report detailing the state’s continuous battle against nonnative plant and animal species.
The lake will remain closed to fishing will biologists continue to trap the predator fish.