The electric eel is one of a group of electric fish. These fish capture their prey and defend themselves from enemies by discharging electric shocks. They closely resemble and are related to other fish, but they just happen to have this electric power. Scientists still cannot explain the origin and development of the electric power in these fish.
The most dangerous of all the electric fish. is the electric eel of South America, sometimes called “the Brazilian electric eel”. This thick, blackish creature is an inhabitant of the rivers emptying into the Amazon and Orinoco rivers. It often grows to a length of 2 meters or more and by a blow of its tail, in which its electric organs are located, it can stun an animal as large as a horse! Human beings are also said to feel the effects of the shock for several hours.
Another kind of electric fish is electric catfish. This is sometimes four feet long and may be found in all the larger rivers of tropical Africa. Third in the group of electric fish is the electric ray, or torpedo ray, found in all warm seas. It lives mostly in deep water near the shore. The member of this family inhabiting the Atlantic Ocean is said to grow to a length of 1.5 meters and weighs 90 kilograms.
The electric ray is dark above and lights below. It is round and flat and has a powerful tail. Its electric organs have situated the head and gills. Experiments made on this fish have shown that its electric power can be used up and that the power will not return until the creature has rested and eaten.
Which EEL Is Electric?