Fish come out of drainage system in Fort Myers

Reporter: Haley Zarcone
Published: Updated:

Fish scattered in the street and on the sidewalk, flopping around at the Canterfield Assisted Living Facility in Fort Myers.

Instead of wanting to sleep in this weather like many of us, downpours are their alarm clock. It wakes them up so much that they start walking around.

Wednesday, they put one fin in front of the other in the middle of our afternoon shower.

“Also known as Walking Catfish, certain species can lie dormant, even underground and in mud for a very long time, and the rain will kind of wake them up,” said Ranger Rob, naturalist.

For those working and living at the Canterfield, this was an “only in Florida” kind of experience.

“I’ve never seen such a thing. That’s what we were looking to see where they were coming from, and we were looking into drains, a drain sink that seemed to me like they were overfilled, so we were assuming that’s where they were coming from,” said Jessica Arizmendi, from Canterfield Assisted Living Facility.

Ranger Rob said it’s not uncommon to see creatures come out when we have downpours like this.

“You’ll get a lot of different animals that hide in those drains. A drain is essentially just like a cave or a hollowed-out log. Sewers are really underwater caverns with water going through them and these animals can utilize those if they have to. When the water floods, it’s going to bring those animals up to the surface,” he said.

if you see a catfish come out like this, the best thing Ranger Rob said you can do is take a picture and leave them alone.

Catfish can actually walk out of water for up to 18 hours.

If you see an endangered animal near or in your drains, you have to report it to FWC.

Copyright ©2024 Fort Myers Broadcasting. All rights reserved.

This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without prior written consent.