ATLANTA (December 18, 2015) - Georgia Aquarium has opened an exciting new electric eel exhibit. The 750 gallon habitat is located in the Southern Company River Scout gallery, across from the piranha exhibit. Native to South America, the electric eel, or Electrophorus electricus, is the largest species of knifefish and can grow to almost eight feet in length and weigh up to 44 pounds. Electric eels have elongated, scaleless bodies that are olive to black in color with a yellow or orange-hued throat region.

Electric Eel Fun Facts:

  • Although not technically an eel, the electric eel gets its name from the powerful electric charge they are able to generate.
  • The electric eel is not aggressive, yet can deliver a shock exceeding 500 volts. This electric charge is most commonly used to defend against predators, subdue prey, navigate its way through murky waters and identify nearby animals.
  • Electric eels produce electricity through their tail, which makes up the majority of its body. The longer an eel grows, the more powerful their electric charge!
  • Electric eels are nocturnal and carnivorous, seeking shelter during the day and feeding upon small fish and amphibians at night.
  • The vital organs of electric eels are located in the front of its body near the head.
  • This species of fish takes in 80 percent of their oxygen by taking in air through their mouth. The air is later released through the gill slits in the form of bubbles.

For more information on electric eels and the new exhibit, visit Georgia Aquarium's blog, and follow Georgia Aquarium on Facebook and Twitter for more updates on animals and galleries.

To plan your visit to Georgia Aquarium and purchase tickets, visit www.georgiaaquarium.org or call 404-581-4000.

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ABOUT GEORGIA AQUARIUM

Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that contains more than 10 million gallons of water and has the largest collection of aquatic animals. Georgia Aquarium’s mission is to be a scientific institution that entertains and educates, features exhibits and programs of the highest standards, and offers engaging and exciting guest experiences that promote the conservation of aquatic biodiversity throughout the world. Georgia Aquarium is an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums and the Alliance of Marine Mammal Parks and Aquariums. For additional information, visit www.georgiaaquarium.org