The Electric Eel (Electrophorus electricus) is truly a wonder of the animal kingdom, and an amazing work of millions of years of evolution.
Despite its name it is in no way closely related to eels, it is a member of the Knifefish family and is the only member of its genus. The electric eel lives in fresh water in the Amazon, as well as other river basins in south america. They can grow to about 2m in length (6 and a half feet) weighing 20 kg. It can produce an electric shock of up to 600 Volts!
It produces this shock using 3 organs, the Main organ, the Hunters organ, and the Sachs organ. The total size of these 3 organs make up an amazing four fifths of the eels body! The organs are made of electrocytes, and are lined up so that a current can be passed from one organ to the next. When the eel wants to produce a shock it opens up glands in and between the organs allowing sodium ions to flow between them, creating a sudden change in potential difference (voltage.)
The shock only lasts approximately 0.2 milliseconds meaning it is not very likely to be lethal to an adult human despite it being 600 volts. That being said, it has been known to kill if the shock is, for example, directed towards the heart. 

The Electric Eel (Electrophorus electricus) is truly a wonder of the animal kingdom, and an amazing work of millions of years of evolution.

Despite its name it is in no way closely related to eels, it is a member of the Knifefish family and is the only member of its genus. The electric eel lives in fresh water in the Amazon, as well as other river basins in south america. They can grow to about 2m in length (6 and a half feet) weighing 20 kg. It can produce an electric shock of up to 600 Volts!

It produces this shock using 3 organs, the Main organ, the Hunters organ, and the Sachs organ. The total size of these 3 organs make up an amazing four fifths of the eels body! The organs are made of electrocytes, and are lined up so that a current can be passed from one organ to the next. When the eel wants to produce a shock it opens up glands in and between the organs allowing sodium ions to flow between them, creating a sudden change in potential difference (voltage.)

The shock only lasts approximately 0.2 milliseconds meaning it is not very likely to be lethal to an adult human despite it being 600 volts. That being said, it has been known to kill if the shock is, for example, directed towards the heart. 

  1. ancastoica reblogged this from thatscienceguy
  2. blue-and-brown-eyes-lover reblogged this from thatscienceguy
  3. desiownsthesky reblogged this from thatscienceguy
  4. bluewaterdreams reblogged this from thatscienceguy
  5. urban-pharaoh reblogged this from thatscienceguy
  6. asthespidercrawls reblogged this from thatscienceguy
  7. chiaroxoscuro reblogged this from jubilantharlequin
  8. jubilantharlequin reblogged this from thatscienceguy
  9. spineofaseawitch reblogged this from thatscienceguy
  10. downwhereitswetter reblogged this from psherman42wallabywaysydney22
  11. fuckyeahawesomefish reblogged this from thatscienceguy
  12. frlendzoned reblogged this from oneiromania
  13. nope-lifer reblogged this from oneiromania
  14. stardustsurvivor reblogged this from oneiromania
  15. oneiromania reblogged this from realmonstrosities
  16. life-under-the-light reblogged this from thatscienceguy
  17. mauricism reblogged this from thatscienceguy
  18. fliondesso reblogged this from thatscienceguy
  19. elephant-on-acid reblogged this from thatscienceguy
  20. ah0lywell reblogged this from thatscienceguy
  21. carvedimages reblogged this from thatscienceguy
  22. xfrs-blog reblogged this from thatscienceguy
  23. lolanioitnb reblogged this from thatscienceguy and added:
    Science
Short URL for this post: http://tmblr.co/Z6uQzs1DYWfp7