Posts Tagged 'electric eel'

Animal Updates – October 18

national aquarium animal update

Animal transports from our DC facility, which closed to the public on September 30th, to Baltimore have been continuing steadily over the last week. Thus far, close to 400 animals have successfully made their way to Baltimore (either to the Aquarium building, or our off-site Animal Care Center).

This week, an electric eel and alligator gar were among the animals transported to our ACC. As you can imagine, there are many precautions to consider when moving an animal that can produce up to 600 volts of electricity!

national aquarium electric eel

Our electric eel in DC is actually trained to swim into a net (a helpful behavior when it comes to medical exams and exhibit repair) – this step made the process of his transport seamless for our team!

To move our alligator gar, a prehistoric-looking “megafish,” our staff actually had to use a mesh stretcher to move our gar from his habitat enclosure to his transport carrier.

We’re happy to report that after a quick trip to Baltimore, these animals are acclimating well to their new homes!

Be sure to check back every Friday to find out what’s happening!

Animal Update – July 12

Between our Baltimore and Washington, DC, venues, more than 17,500 animals representing 900 species call the National Aquarium home. There are constant changes, additions, and more going on behind the scenes that our guests may not notice during their visit. We want to share these fun updates with our community so we’re bringing them to you in our weekly Animal Update posts!

Check our blog every Friday to find out what’s going on… here’s what’s new this week!

AnimalUpdated_DC

Guests can now HEAR our electric eel “stun” it’s food!

Electrophorus electricus—everything about this eel’s scientific name says high voltage! Of the fishes able to generate an electrical discharge, electric eels are by far the champions, producing up to 600 volts!

electric eel

They use this voltage to stun their prey and to protect themselves from predators.

Our staff in Washington, DC has recently installed an amplifier in our eel’s habitat that converts these shocks into audible sounds! Because water conducts electricity so well, the amplifier is able to actively broadcast sounds from the eel’s different electric organs – which he uses to scan his surroundings (these eels are mostly blind and use their electric pulses to navigate) and occasionally produce an impressive stun.

Check out this video that captured the sound from the amplifier during a recent feeding:

Be sure to check back every Friday to find out what’s happening!


Sign up for AquaMail

Twitter Updates


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 236 other followers