Giant goldfish photo, video: Lake Tahoe researchers say monster goldfish found near Tahoe Keys

Researchers at Lake Tahoe have reeled in a catch you will have to see to believe.

On almost a daily basis, Lake Tahoe researchers head out on a customized boat to search for non-native fish like the large mouth bass. Using elective probes, researchers stun the fish and then catch them with a net.

That's how Christine Ngai struck gold.

"You just see this bright golden orange thing starting to float up and you're like what is that? And then you take a net and you scoop it up and you're like it's a goldfish," Ngai said.

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It's the same species sold in your pet store. But what they are finding are no ordinary goldfish. They are giant -- more than a foot and a half long.

"We know that we have a giant goldfish," UNR Associate Professor Dr. Sudeep Chandra said. "The question now becomes how long has it been there and how many others are there in the lake."

You might not think a goldfish could survive in Lake Tahoe with the snow creeping right up to the shoreline, but scientists found they are not only surviving -- they are multiplying.

One day they caught 15 in just this one corner in the Tahoe Keys.

Researchers believe the goldfish are introduced by people emptying fish bowls or aquariums into lakes and streams.

"Those small little things that people do can have a large impact when you consider that its probably not just one person doing it," Tahoe Regional Planning Agency official Ted Thayer said.

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