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Temporal range: Late Miocene
An artist's illustration of Megapiranha paranensis
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Characiformes
Family: Characidae
Subfamily: Serrasalminae
Genus: Megapiranha
Species: M. rastrosus
Binomial name
Megapiranha paranensis
Cione et al. 2009

Megapiranha paranensis is an extinct serrasalmid characin fish from the Late Miocene (8–10 million years ago) of Argentina described in 2009. It is thought to have been up to a meter in length. The holotype consists only of premaxillae and a zigzag tooth row; the rest of its body is unknown. This dentition is reminiscent of both the double-row seen in pacus, and the single row seen in the teeth of modern piranhas, suggesting that M. paranensis is a transitional form. It was a bigger relative of the Piranha.

In the Media

  • Megapiranha made an appearance in River Monsters: Prehistoric Terror. Jeremy Wade discusses it’s estimated capabilities and compares it with modern day piranhas.
  • Megapiranha is one of the tameable creatures in Ark: Survival Evolved


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