Is This True, Not, Or Just A Crock – (#19)
Eel hunting is called eeling and is a popular sport practiced by eelers – people trained in catching eels and surviving the shock.
Although an electric eel can be mistaken for a snake, its more accurately classified as a fish, an aquatic vertebrate animal with scales that has a capacity to produce an electric field using specialized cells distributed throughout its body. The larger the eel, the greater the charge, serving as a major defense against predators and incapacitating prey up to 15 feet away.
Now, engineers from Yale University have designed a man made tool adapting the principles of the electric eel cell by not only replicating them but improving on their design. They claim that artificial versions of the eel’s electricity generating cells could be developed as a power source for medical implants and other tiny devices.
Other engineers of the new field of systems biology question if we really understand enough about how a cell produces electricity to do a better job of designing them than nature has. In an experiment at the Kakamigahara institute, Japanese scientists wondered if it were possible to harness the eel’s power for economic use. They attached a conductive copper wire from a fish tank to a Christmas tree fully ornamented with lights. Every time the eel scraped against the wire, the tree lit up. Despite all this science, a more common place to find an eel is marinated and served on a sushi plate.