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The Red River Beast

Updated on January 24, 2012

Does A Unknown Shark Species Live In The Red River of North Dakota?

Update 2012: I have another photo of what has to be a shark in the Red River. Picture was taken again during spring, near downtown Fargo ND. Please see below.

The photo below is of a shark-like fish in the early spring of 2006. According to my research, this should be impossible, but clearly you can see a large fish around 6-8 feet long, with a large dorsal fin and tail fin like that of a shark.

This "River Beast" thrashed about in some shallow water near the submerged bridge, then ventured into deeper water in the middle of the channel.

I would have not believed this were some kind of shark until I was able to find more evidence that a fresh water shark(s) may in fact live and perhaps thrive in the fresh water of the Red River.

My hypothesis is that somehow, a small population of shark either became locked into the Red River in the past, or that this is not a shark at all but a previously unidentified fish. Although I have encountered some large cat fish before, the characteristics of this fish strongly resemble that of a shark.

The Red River of North Dakota stretches from Canada to West Central Minnesota. The Red River is unique in that it flows NORTH, into Lake Winnipeg. Since the first photo was taken in early spring, could this species have gone upstream, or south, to reproduce? I don't know.

Thanks for visiting, make your own conclusions or contact me if you have any hard evidence regarding this "River Beast".

A Snapshot Of A Northern, Fresh Water River Shark

A Snapshot Of A Northern, Fresh Water River Shark
A Snapshot Of A Northern, Fresh Water River Shark

More Evidence of Fresh Wahter Sharks In North Dakota

After the first photo was taken, I decided to start an effort of investigation. If it was indeed a shark, just how could such an animal survive, and just how did it arrive? Were there more? If they were sharks, are they dangerous?

My investigation began by trying to talk to experts. I was laughed at and dismissed immediately.

That was, until I was able to take the next photo about 3 months later. As you can see, this "River Beast" looks very much like a smaller shark, perhaps 3-4 feet in length.

More Evidence of Fresh Water Sharks in North Dakota

More Evidence of Fresh Water Sharks in North Dakota
More Evidence of Fresh Water Sharks in North Dakota

This has to be at least an 8 foot shark.

This has to be at least an 8 foot shark.
This has to be at least an 8 foot shark.

What Do You Think?

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    • profile image

      anamis 4 months ago

      this is soo old and inaccurate it is a unidentified catfish bullsharks naaa

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      joe 5 months ago

      this is fake. is it?

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      lala 2 years ago

      8 foot shark you are joking

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      nobody 2 years ago

      not real just a cat fish

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      gdaj 2 years ago

      totally fake, edited photos, you are not fooling anyone. A 9 year old could research better than you

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      I think this is a job for Jeremy wade

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      its a sturgeon

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      hahaha! tots not real! i agree with hater girl!Its not real you stuipids!

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      @anonymous: NO ITS NOT

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      @anonymous: catfiesh and why they stop making twinkies huh that was my favorite drink :( DON'T JUDGE ME I LOVE DRINKING TWINKIES

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      the "picture" of the "shark in the river" is totially eaither photoshopped, it is a catfish, or it was takein where there are sharks. sorry but this website is as real as unicorns! DO NOT BELIEVE ANYTHING YOU READ ON THIS WEBSITE!

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      what i don't no why i here

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      HEY U GOT UR SHARK IN MY CERUAL

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      i totally disagree with the other bananamans this is totally real

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      i totally disagree with the other bananamans this is totally real

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      ITS A CATFISH NOTA SHARK

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      this is totially photo shopped!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      its photoshop pplzzzzzz

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      its photoshop pplzzzzzz

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      ITS A SHARK

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      @anonymous: IM TOTALY WITH HIM!!!!!!!............:}

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      It's a bull shark. They go really far up river either that or yor lying or lying

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      There are several species of river sharks in the world, the spear tooth shark for example live in fresh water all there lives, river sharks are very elusive and the poor visibility of the water they live in makes sightings very rare.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      It's a freakin' lake sturgeon; one of the largest freshwater fish in North America. It has the same dorsal and tail fin as a shark. There's still a few big ones left in the Red; the photo at the bridge is obviously one of them.

      Come on kids; a shark? Really?

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      @anonymous: It's a lake sturgeon (no paddle fish in the Red). A lake sturgeon is built on the same body plan of a shark; same fin placements and same herterocercal tail. Most of them are now gone from the Red, but there are still some and the shot at the bridge couldbe a larger old one.

      Look here: http://www.fws.gov/midwest/sturgeon/images/cllas.g...

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      ackchusker 6 years ago

      Top picture: Very, very large spoonbill or paddle fish is the only know fresh water explanation... Because it is the only freshwater "big" species that has a solid dorsal fin... Shark is the only other explanation... It would have to be a new or evolved species because bulls are not usually found in cold water...

      But how do we really know where the pic was taken...

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      @Alexwinnipeg: there are no blue cats in the red

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      not the red river the red river is a muddy river that never gets that clear

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      it is a catfish

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      @ackchusker: i agree those pic could be taken any where because vie fished on the red river and never seen that lush of vegetation

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      this could be anywhere

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      @anonymous: definatly a bull shark... thay are common in inland asia

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      Alexwinnipeg 6 years ago

      I am afraid it is a big blue catfish friend, and I am not saying is not dangerous, a shark is by far too much dangerous than any catfish would ever be.

      Alex Mustang

      Winnipeg Rentals

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      looks like a blue cat

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      anonymous 7 years ago

      Your evidence looks more like a big old cat fish to me.

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      anonymous 7 years ago

      they are bull sharks and they are dangerous.

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      hey

    • BigFish1 profile image
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      BigFish1 7 years ago

      More pictures are on the way!

      ====================

      Get Red Kool Aid Out Of Carpet

      Win An XS Energy Drink

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      Amazing pictures I find these fresh water sharks very interesting.

      What other species of sharks can come into our lakes and rivers!

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      anonymous 7 years ago

      Dave, thank you for sharing this lens, this is awesome about the Red River Beast. I never knew, but seeing is believing. I'm going to get this featured on a couple of my Fargo lenses.

      Wishing you all the best!

      Susie

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      Neat photos. Bull Sharks are known to come up rivers and I've read of them found in Michigan and Illinois waters. The American paddlefish can get relatively large and has an archaic shark-like look to its body and tail, but the second pic definitely resembles the Bull.

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      if there is a shark in the missouri, it could not be anything other than a bull shark. sharks can spend an extremely short amount of time in a river depending on the salt content of the water, but for something to be in the missouri and living there, there is no other species it could be. i would have to see more evidence, though.

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      ohhhhhh my goddddd.... i'm moving!

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      i was about 12 yrs old and was swimming with my mom north of chamberlain sd I looked out and said mom it's a shark, she made it to shore and i made it to a log I was playing by, the large top fin got to my log and disappeared. My mother denies this ever happened because she claims there are no sharks in the missouri river, but I will never forget that large gray fin coming towards me. she has never went swimming again.

      [in reply to jared]

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      anonymous 9 years ago

      It is most defiantly a bull shark, they live in fresh water 2000 miles up the amazon, in new jersey, 1000miles up the Mississippi....so yeah its not a new species. They have an adaptation in there gills that lets them live in freshwater, and some would say "what about the fresh water on its skin"? that an other adaptation. Not putting you down, just saying...it probably came in during a flood from the Missouri river, to to its proximity...hope this helps!!!

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      anonymous 9 years ago

      You have to fork over a bit more info for me to begin to bite the hook. Location and phot duplication of said first photo. More details.

    • profile image

      anonymous 9 years ago

      cest la vie, i believe, that some black wheel in fellow christ lover becomes me when im a white man, cause icanbelieve this is going to happen tomorrow yo ser tu hijo mas tu no saber, lo que sucedera.

      Oye pues, nocreo quemellevesa casa,

      paranoid_vamps@hotmail.com

      contact me for a blowjob

    • evelynsaenz1 profile image

      Evelyn Saenz 9 years ago from Royalton

      The Bluebird of Happiness loved your lens so much that she is sending you a virtual Heart Shaped Waffle and a cup of coffee to hang on your wall.

    • legbamel lm profile image

      legbamel lm 9 years ago

      Please, add more information. Where were those pictures taken? If that's Fargo, I'm going to have to make doubly sure that my kids know to keep out of the water! ;)