Written by Abigail Lathrop
One of the greatest aspects of Animal Crossing is the Museum. You have 3 wings, to begin with, and later receive a fourth (I won’t disclose just in case you aren’t that far into the game). My favorite wing is the Aquarium. The first room you enter is a combination of pond and river life.
First up is the arapaima! In our world they are found in the Amazon and Essequibo basins of South America.
Fun Fact! Arapaima produce boneless steaks and are considered a delicacy. In the Amazon region, locals often salt and dry the meat, rolling it into a cigar-style package that is then tied and can be stored without rotting, which is important in a region with little refrigeration. They are also one of the largest freshwater fish, reaching as large as 9.8 feet! Woah.
Next up is a fish famous for its appetite. The piranha! In the game, you find them in the river most of the day but mostly between 4pm and 9pm. Perhaps they all went out for dinner? In our world, they are found to inhabit South American rivers, floodplains, lakes, and reservoirs.
Fun Fact! Piranha teeth are often used as tools themselves (such as for carving wood or cutting hair) or to modify other tools (such as sharpening of darts). Piranhas have one of the strongest bites found in bony fishes.
Here are some books in our collection featuring piranhas (don’t worry, we have plenty more!):
- Piranhas by Deborah Coldiron
- Samson: The Piranha Who Went to Dinner by Tadgh Bentley
The suckerfish is next. In-game, we carefully watch the sea for fins, and this is where you can catch a suckerfish, but in real life, their native home is in North America. Most commonly, the Ozarks making this creature a river resident.
Fun Fact! In the Ozarks, they are a common food, and a festival is held each year to celebrate them. Try saying Fish Festival five times fast.
Next, we reach a night owl like Blathers! The Saddled Bichir. They occur in freshwater environments in West Africa, including the Nile, Niger, Volta, Bandama, Comoé and Ouémé Rivers, and the Chad basin. They inhabit swamps, rivers, and marshes. They are occasionally found in brackish water environments, particularly around mangroves. Sounds like they are everywhere! Fun!
Fun fact! For these fish, their lower jaw is longer than their upper jaw, and as juveniles, their gills are external, but as they grow into adults, the gills become internal.
There plenty of more fish we find in rivers within our islands. What is your favorite catch so far?
Want to explore the world of rivers? Here a few suggested titles we have in our catalog:
- Fish Everywhere by Britta Teckentrup
- Rivers: A Visual History from River to Sea by Peter Goes
- Amazon Adventure by Sy Montgomery
- In the Rivers by Laura K. Murray
- The Wonderous Workings of Planet Earth by Rachel Ignotofsky