<< Previous Next >>

Electric Eel

Electric Eel
Photo Information
Copyright: Benyamin Lakitan (blakitan) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1039 W: 71 N: 1332] (5517)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2006-09-23
Categories: Fish
Exposure: f/2.8, 1/8 seconds
Details: Tripod: Yes
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): #2 Aquatic Animals [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2006-10-03 21:22
Viewed: 7071
Points: 32
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
The electric eel (Electrophorus electricus) is a species of fish. It is capable of generating powerful electric shocks of up to 650 volts, which it uses for both hunting and self-defense. It is a top predator in its South American range.

Despite its name it is not an eel at all but rather a knifefish. It can grow up to 2.5 m (about 8.2 feet) in length and 20 kg (about 44 pounds) in weight, although 1 m specimens are more common. A typical example will have an elongated cylindrical body bearing only a few scales, a flattened head, and an overall dark grayish green color shifting to yellowish on the bottom. Some also have bluish colors.

They tend to live on muddy bottoms in calm water and are obligate air-breathers; rising to the surface every 10 minutes or so, the animal will gulp air before returning to the bottom. Nearly 80% of the oxygen used by the fish is taken in this way.

Scientists have been able to determine through experimental information that E. electricus has a well developed sense of sound. They have a Weberian apparatus that connects the ear to the swim bladder which greatly enhances their hearing capability.

The electric eel generates its characteristic electrical pulse in a manner similar to a battery, in which stacked plates produce an electrical charge. In the electric eel, some 5,000 to 6,000 stacked electroplaques are capable of producing a shock at up to 500 volts and 1 ampere of current (500 watts). There are reports of animals producing larger voltages, but the typical output is sufficient to stun or deter virtually any other animal. Juveniles produce smaller voltages (about 100 volts). Electric eels are capable of varying the intensity of the electrical discharge, using lower discharges for "hunting" and higher intensities are used for stunning prey, or defending themselves. When agitated, it is capable of producing these intermittent electrical shocks over a period of at least an hour without signs of tiring. The exact mechanism remains largely unknown.

fyapici, thor68, Janice, izler, jeanpaul, jcoowanitwong, anavazao, edal, Alex99, volkan has marked this note useful
Only registered TrekNature members may rate photo notes.
Add Critique [Critiquing Guidelines] 
Only registered TrekNature members may write critiques.
You must be logged in to start a discussion.

Critiques [Translate]

Hi Ben,
Thankyou for this one. I have never seen before a fish like this on this site. Very different and fantastic shot. Actually it was better if you could show whole body of this fish. But really wonderful. Bravo and TFS.
With my best wishes,

  • Great 
  • Janice Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3277 W: 148 N: 6163] (18832)
  • [2006-10-04 5:14]

He is an ugly beast Ben! No, I don't like his looks at all, but git is a ood photo. And it's NOT an eel - that's interesting to know. I'd hate to come acroos one, let alone an 8 foot one!! Thank you for showing and sharing,

Hi Ben,
A very nice shot on this Electric Eel. You did a good job shooting thru the glass. The colors and detail look very good. Very informative notes on this guy. A very interesting subject. Well done!

  • Great 
  • izler Gold Star Critiquer [C: 1387 W: 3 N: 9] (44)
  • [2006-10-05 12:14]

hi benyamin
i think you captured behind the glass but the result is successful. point of view, colours, using of lighting and detailed note are great. thanks for sharing

Hello Benyamin,
A nice specimen. This elongated electric eel is difficult to have a good composition. You did well here. TFS

Hi Benyamin,
This is very interesting; I like these useful explications about this strange fish. I know that we have some here in my country too. This is a good portrait with great lithgning and details. It has such a funny face :) Thanks,

Bonsoir Ben

Félicitations pour l'éclat des couleurs et la netteté sur cette prise de vue. Bravo pour le bel éclairage.C'est une excellente prise de vue.

Merci pour le partage et au revoir...JP

Good enough to recharge my camera? Great shot Ben. I like the detail textures.

  • Great 
  • arfer Gold Star Critiquer [C: 2731 W: 0 N: 0] (0)
  • [2006-10-07 0:01]

Hello Benyamin

A very unique shot of this eel.Good job through glass.Well composed and presented.TFS


No word's ......Good detail, colours and very sharp. exposure and lighting are good. Good POV and composition!
Take care Ana:)

  • Great 
  • edal Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 374 W: 48 N: 413] (1853)
  • [2006-10-07 14:13]

Hi Benyamin!
Your pic and your story are very interesting - they tell us how many secrets mother nature keeps in store for us!

Hello Ben,
For sure... it is not a beauty!
Well captured however, probably under difficult conditions...
Good colours and nice details in the fish, in thgis nicely composed presentation!
Pablo -

  • Great 
  • Alex99 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4072 W: 133 N: 7096] (23735)
  • [2006-10-08 9:49]

Hi Benyamin.
Very nice shot. I like its clear rich colours and excellent lighting. Combination of lights and darks are very expressive. Sharpness and details of the animal and its environment are great. Perfect done and TFS,

  • Great 
  • volkan Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor [C: 497 W: 10 N: 4] (2425)
  • [2006-10-08 12:51]

Hi Ben
Nice capture of the electric eel.It seems to be a little flu maybe of the aquarium.TFS.

yeah, this is great, cool fish, ben! :-)
they used to have one in a zoo nearby and everytime he sent
out an electric shock you could see it on the monitor they had installed.
superb "portrait"-shot through the glass showing all the nice details.
terrific job & great note, thorsten.

I've seen a lot of these in REAL LIFE in Brazil.
The shock they can inflict is most painful.
Love your notes.
Thanks for sharing such a GREAT image & capture.
Best regards,

Nice pic and very nice note! Much info I didn't know. Thanks for this one. Regards

Calibration Check