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A pufferfish in Virginia has over 27,000 followers on Instagram

Posted at 12:43 PM, Sep 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-22 17:28:29-04

HAMPTON ROADS, Va - From Los Angeles to Wrigley Field, Norfolk to Virginia Beach, strange signs are bubbling up on telephone poles across the nation.

"So I went old school put up about five fliers in my neighborhood and saw it worked really well," said D.C. resident Joe Kogan.

Kogan who lives in the nation's capital has spent the last six months working to make his four-inch Pufferfish “Rona” Insta-famous.

"Once I got all-around D.C, I drove through all the surrounding areas then even drove to Virginia Beach, Norfolk, and Hampton, just looking for poles near people," said Kogan.

Kogan has never owned a fish – quarantine piqued his interest in the underwater world, and his grassroots efforts have blown Rona into what he calls a "fin-influencer."

"I am really glad I got her because she has been keeping everyone in this house sane," he said.

She has more than 27,000 followers, more than the Virginia Aquarium.

"A lot of people think fish are kinda like gotta be weird to be a fish keeper and there is no respect in pet keeping community among fish," said Kogan. "I think Rona has put the fish keeping world on the map."

The exotic fish dazzles followers daily with her live crawl fish feedings. She is still learning how to hunt and will soon reach her full size of two feet!

"She is an underwater puppy and gets very excited to eat her food," said Kogan. People tell me all the time they love seeing the posts every day, I think it's really beautiful, to be honest."

A Cinderella story about a colorful catch that has hooked the hearts of so many stuck at home.

To follow Rona the Pufferfish click here.

This story was first reported by Chelsea Donovan at WTKR in Norfolk, Virginia.