Vietnamese Man Has a School of Wild River Fish for a Pet

A Vietnamese man has become famous in his home province of An Giang for taking care of thousands of wild river fish who visit his house every day for food.

Muoi Phuc’s house in Long Kien, Vietnam’s Mekong Delta, is a popular attraction for both locals and tourists. People routinely stop by to watch the man feed a school of wild fish that visits him daily. When the 52-year-old man started feeding the fish, it was just a handful of pangasius, but over the last two years, their number grew at a steady pace, and now thousands of fish stop by his riverside home every day for a bite to eat. The fish are free to come and go as they please, and others have tried attracting them by throwing food into the river, but for some reason, they only stop at Muoi Phuc’s house.

The Vietnamese duck farmer’s life changed on Tết (Vietnamese New Lunar Year) of 2020. He remembers the day like it was yesterday. His wife and children were away and he had stopped by the house to prepare some rice to take to his grandparents for Tết. As he prepared the rice, he looked out the window and noticed a few fish coming out to the surface of the river with their mouths open, as if begging for food.

Muoi Phuc took a handful of duck food pellets he had lying around and threw them to the fish. He then went back to his business without giving the hungry fish a second thought. But the next day, he noticed the fish again, and again he threw them some food. They’ve been visiting him daily ever since, and bring new friends with them every time.

From the dozen or so pangasius fish that first stopped by Muoi Phuc’s home over two years ago, the school of fish has grown to several thousand – some estimate it to be in the tens of thousands – from different species, like halibut, catfish, snakehead fish, and even the aggressive white pompano.

No one really knows where the fish came from, there was never any news of a fishery or a fish pond losing its fish, or why they chose Muoi’s home from the thousands of others in the Mekong Delta.

At first, Muoi Phuc used a few bags of fish food every month, but now, the school of fish has gotten so big that he needs tons of food per month to keep them fed. Sometimes the cost is too much for him, so he throws them spoiled fruit and vegetables donated by local farmers, which the fish seem to like just as much.

Tourists routinely come to Muoi Phuc’s home to see the giant school of fish for themselves, but sadly, they aren’t the only ones who stop by. Every night, dozens of fishing boats stop by his house and throw their nets in hopes of catching the giant school but so far the fish have been able to avoid them. Still, Muoi and his father often stay up to make sure no one harms the fish.


“Many people know that there are fish here, so they take advantage of our absence to stalk and cast their nets,” Muoi told Dantri. Every time we see them fish her, my father and I beg them not to do it. I don’t know what else to do.”

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