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Electric Eel

Electric eel (Electrophorus electricus), at the New England AquariumElectric EelElectric EelElectric eel (Electrophorus electricus), at the New England AquariumElectric Eel
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Electric Eel Facts

Kingdom:
Five groups that classify all living things
Animalia
Phylum:
A group of animals within the animal kingdom
Chordata
Class:
A group of animals within a pylum
Actinopterygii
Order:
A group of animals within a class
Gymnotiformes
Family:
A group of animals within an order
Gymnotidae
Genus:
A group of animals within a family
Electrophorus
Scientific Name:
Comprised of the genus followed by the species
Electrophorus Electricus
Type:
The animal group that the species belongs to
Fish
Diet:
What kind of foods the animal eats
Carnivore
Size (L):
How long (L) or tall (H) the animal is
2.5m (8.22ft)
Weight:
The measurement of how heavy the animal is
20kg (44lbs)
Top Speed:
The fastest recorded speed of the animal
8 km/h (5mph)
Life Span:
How long the animal lives for
15 - 22 years
Lifestyle:
Whether the animal is solitary or sociable
Solitary
Conservation Status:
The likelihood of the animal becoming extinct
Least Concern
Colour:
The colour of the animal's coat or markings
Black, White, Purple, Blue
Skin Type:
The protective layer of the animal
Scales
Favourite Food:Fish
Habitat:
The specific area where the animal lives
River in the Amazon
Average Clutch Size:
The average number of eggs laif at once
20,000
Main Prey:Fish, Birds, Small mammals
Predators:
Other animals that hunt and eat the animal
Human
Distinctive Features:
Characteristics unique to the animal
Long body and organs that produce and electric current

Electric Eel Location

Map of Electric Eel Locations
Map of South America

Electric Eel

Electric Eels are found in the waters of South America, and are capable of generating a 500volt electric shock through 28ft of still water. The shock that the electric eel produces is enough to harm any large mammal, including humans.

Electric eels can grow up to 2.5 metres and only need to surface for air every 10 minutes due to the eels complex circulatory system. Electric eels tend to live in muddy beds in calm water, eating fish and small mammals.

Despite the name electric eel, the electric eel is actually related most closely to a catfish and not the common eel fish and many electric eel adults tend to be smaller than their eel fish counterparts.

The electricity that the electric eel uses to shock its prey, is produced in pairs of organs that are found in the abdomen of the electric eel. These electricity producing organs take up around of 80% of the body of the electric eel leaving only 20% of the electric eels body free to hold the electric eels vital organs that it needs to survive.

Electric eels are found inhabiting fresh waters of the Amazon and Orinoco river basins in South America, and the electric eels tend to prefer the river floodplains, swamps, coastal plains, and creeks. Electric eels tend to live on muddy bottoms in calm water and in stagnant arms of rivers, where the electric eel spends most of its time hunting.

The electric eel is also known for its unusual breeding behaviour. In the dry season, a male electric eel makes a nest from his saliva into which the female electric eel lays her eggs. As many as 17,000 young electric eels will hatch from the eggs in one nest. These young electric eels feed mainly on invertebrates found on the river bed, however, first-born baby electric eels have been known to gobble up the eggs from batches of other electric eels that were laid only a short time after themselves.

Electric Eel Comments

Ashk
"It is a wonderful site about all the animals in the world and I think when I grow up,I will tell my students about what I did when I was on this website"
abigail
"cool, but I would have liked to know more"
FallenzAngelz
"This article is awesome but i would like to know how long is the male of female. Other than that I'm happy!"
Sean
"It helpful"
Sam
"amazing "
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First Published: 10th November 2008, Last Updated: 9th January 2017 [View Sources]

Sources:
1. David Burnie, Dorling Kindersley (2008) Illustrated Encyclopedia Of Animals [Accessed at: 10 Nov 2008]
2. David Burnie, Kingfisher (2011) The Kingfisher Animal Encyclopedia [Accessed at: 01 Jan 2011]
3. Dorling Kindersley (2006) Dorling Kindersley Encyclopedia Of Animals [Accessed at: 10 Nov 2008]
4. Richard Mackay, University of California Press (2009) The Atlas Of Endangered Species [Accessed at: 01 Jan 2009]
5. Tom Jackson, Lorenz Books (2007) The World Encyclopedia Of Animals [Accessed at: 10 Nov 2008]

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