14-inch goldfish was found swimming in the Niagara River

Apparently, there’s good reason to never flush a goldfish.

In Buffalo, New York, the Niagara Waterkeeper found a nearly foot-long goldfish downstream of the wastewater treatment plan, according to a Facebook post from the Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper.

On Friday, the Waterkeeper said that he found a 14-inch goldfish downstream of the wastewater treatment plan — and it should be a reminder not to dispose of unwanted pet fish in the toilet.

In the post, the Waterkeeper said that goldfish can be disruptive to natural species.

“Goldfish can survive year-round in our watershed and can destroy the habitat of native fish,” the post said.”Scientists estimate that tens of millions of goldfish now live in the Great Lakes.”

According to a 2018 Business Insider article, releasing goldfish into the wild could lead to an eventual “ecological disaster, which could threaten hundreds of other species. Turns out, goldfish are one of the world’s worst invasive species.”

The article notes that given the time and space, goldfish can grow a great deal in size – even up to 4 pounds. It’s unclear how much the pictured fish clocks in at, but it’s definitely bigger than your average carnival prize.

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The Waterkeeper’s post concluded with a plea: “If you cannot keep your pet, please return it to the store instead of flushing or releasing it.”

In summation, fish are friends — don’t flush!

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