How to Swim with Piranhas in a Safe Way


Piranhas as not as vicious as what Hollywood movies predict them to be. In fact, they are fearful creatures and often shy away from humans. Although piranhas may not likely skin a human being alive, just like in the movies, they can be dangerous and can kill a person. They typically act aggressively toward other animals when they are hungry and when food is scarce. Pirahnas reside in the rivers of South American and the Amazon so if you plan to go there and plan to dip in the rivers, know how to protect yourself from piranhas.

  • Know where piranhas usually live. Piranhas can not survive in cold water so you can find them easily in warmer climates such as South America. They like still and slow-moving waters as well so be wary of these bodies of water.

How to Swim with Piranhas in a Safe Way

  • Beward of hungry piranhas. Pirahnas are the most aggressive especially when they are hungry. If they have abundant supply of food around them,  and this happens during rainy season, they pose no threat to humans. Take note that drought or dry season makes food supply in the tropics scarce, especially when ponds, lakes, and rivers start to dry out. Also, a body of water known to have so many piranhas competing for little food might have aggressive and hungry ones ready to attack a larger animal, even humans, just so they could survive.
  • If you must travel through the waters without a boat, wait until night time to do it. Pirahnas hunt during the day and they normally sleep at night. If they wake up from sleep because of some noise or animals in their territory, they usually flee; beware, however, that there are other nocturnal predators in the waters that may harm you once you cross.
  • If you are wounded and bleeding, avoid any bodies of water. Piranhas that smell blood often get excited and ready to attack the source of that blood; that’s why they usually attack wounded animals that are larger than them. If you’ve recently eaten any raw meat, wash your hands thoroughly before you dip in the water. Stay away from nests located right above the water, as well as near garbage dumps as these are likely the favorite hideouts of piranhas.
  • Stay calm, move slowly, and minimize your movement when crossing the river. Based on a recent study, piranhas are more attracted to activities than blood so don’t talk loudly, don’t swim fast, and don’t run in the water. Also, watch out for alligators when crossing any body of water. Note that they don’t care whether you swim slowly and fluidly or you make loud noise so stay away from bodies of water with known alligators.
  • If you’re desperate to cross the river and there are no other ways but this, create a diversion for piranhas. If you can find an animal carcass or a large piece of raw meat, throw it in the water to attract the attention of the piranhas. Once they start to feast on the meat or carcass, cross the water as fast as you could. Remember though that hungry piranhas can strip off an animal to the bones in a matter of minutes to make sure you can cross as fast as possible.
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About the Author: Cody Riffel is a regular contributor to MegaHowTo. She likes to write on variety of topics, whatever interests her. She also likes to share what she learns over the Internet and her day-to-day life.

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