Jolting discovery: Powerful new electric eel found

Weird News

This undated photo provided by researchers in September 2019 shows an Electrophorus voltai, one of the two newly discovered electric eel species, in Brazil’s Xingu River. While 250 species of fish in South America generate electricity, only electric eels use it to stun prey and for self-protection. (Leandro Sousa via AP)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Researchers report two newly discovered species of electric eels in South America, one of which can deliver a bigger jolt than any other known animal.

The researchers collected 107 eels in four countries and found differences in their DNA, along with minor physical variations.

One species had the ability to generate 860 volts of electricity, more than the 650 volts discharged by the only previously identified type of electric eel.

While 250 species of fish in South America generate electricity, only electric eels use it to stun prey and for self-protection.

Study leader C. David de Santana of Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History says the discovery illustrates the importance of protecting and studying the Amazon rainforest area.

The study was published this week in the journal Nature Communications.

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Overcast

Abbeville

59°F Overcast Feels like 59°
Wind
12 mph N
Humidity
79%
Sunrise
Sunset

Tonight

Cloudy with rain developing after midnight. Low 53F. Winds NE at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 90%. Rainfall near a quarter of an inch.
54°F Cloudy with rain developing after midnight. Low 53F. Winds NE at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 90%. Rainfall near a quarter of an inch.
Wind
9 mph NE
Precip
70%
Sunset
Moon Phase
Waning Crescent
Overcast

Crowley

52°F Overcast Feels like 52°
Wind
12 mph NE
Humidity
94%
Sunrise
Sunset

Tonight

Rain showers early will evolve into a more steady rain overnight. Low near 50F. Winds NNE at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 90%. Rainfall near a quarter of an inch.
54°F Rain showers early will evolve into a more steady rain overnight. Low near 50F. Winds NNE at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 90%. Rainfall near a quarter of an inch.
Wind
9 mph NE
Precip
70%
Sunset
Moon Phase
Waning Crescent
Overcast

Opelousas

50°F Overcast Feels like 50°
Wind
9 mph N
Humidity
92%
Sunrise
Sunset

Tonight

Rain showers early will evolve into a more steady rain overnight. Low 48F. Winds NNE at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 100%. Rainfall near a half an inch.
54°F Rain showers early will evolve into a more steady rain overnight. Low 48F. Winds NNE at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 100%. Rainfall near a half an inch.
Wind
9 mph NE
Precip
70%
Sunset
Moon Phase
Waning Crescent
Overcast

Breaux Bridge

54°F Overcast Feels like 54°
Wind
10 mph NNE
Humidity
90%
Sunrise
Sunset

Tonight

Rain showers early will evolve into a more steady rain overnight. Low 52F. Winds NE at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 90%. Rainfall near a quarter of an inch.
54°F Rain showers early will evolve into a more steady rain overnight. Low 52F. Winds NE at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 90%. Rainfall near a quarter of an inch.
Wind
9 mph NE
Precip
70%
Sunset
Moon Phase
Waning Crescent
Overcast

New Iberia

58°F Overcast Feels like 58°
Wind
14 mph N
Humidity
90%
Sunrise
Sunset

Tonight

Cloudy with a few showers. Low 46F. Winds NE at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 30%.
53°F Cloudy with a few showers. Low 46F. Winds NE at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 30%.
Wind
7 mph NE
Precip
70%
Sunset
Moon Phase
Waning Crescent

Trending Stories

Sidebar