The Magical Electric Animals



ZAP!!!! Did you know some animals have electric powers? Like the electric eel or the sting ray or the catfish? It’s normal for them that they swim around in the waters of the Amazon with their electric powers. But imagine yourself with a long tail and if another person touched you, you could shock them with it.

Do you want to know about the electric stingray, the catfish, and the electric eel? Well then chill and read because the electric stingray, the catfish, and the electric eel are electric animals and they are the most common ones too.

Some people might say that there are 100 different kinds of electric animals. But that's not true. To figure out the actual amount you will have to read on.


In an electric animal’s body there are two special kinds of chemicals that mix together. They create another chemical which go into electric cells and they get stored there until the electric animals needs to use it. When the animal lets that chemical out it spreads in the water and creates electricity.


Are you wondering how that electricity moves through an electric eel’s body? Well, the eel makes an electric field which moves through their body next to the spine in the muscle cells. Some chemicals mix together and create a field. There are about 6000 electric cells in the eel’s body that also help create electricity. They take up 80% of the body and cells and organs are made of a kind of tissue.

The negative charge does not shock the animal’s own body, but scientists are still trying to find out how they don’t get shocked. Then the electric animal lets out the electricity by the tail which creates an electrical field. You can feel the zap from 6 feet away.


After the electric field is produced the eel will know which way to go to find the prey. Electric eels don’t only use electricity to catch prey, but they also use it to communicate with other eels and to find out if any danger is around.

The animals that can produce electricity can also control the way they use it. They can make one side be less powerful and the other more powerful.


The electric eel is a well known electric animal. The electric eels live in the ponds of the Amazon and can grow to be 8ft.

An average car has about 12 volts. An electric eel uses about 600 volts so an electric eel has 50 times more volts than an average car.

In the cells of an electric eel there are tiny batteries that have to re-charge after a while so the eel can’t use electricity ALL the time.

Electric cells take up 4 fifths of an eels body.


The electric catfish is an aggressive animal. It lives in Africa in the nile river. The scientific name for a catfish is Malapterurus electricus. An average electric catfish is about 2 meters long and eats every fish that’s half the size of him.

If you touch it, it can shock you up to 450 volts. Under its soft skin there's a layer of an electric tissue which carries the electricity through its body.The electric catfish has thick lips and whiskers. It’s shape is like a sausage.


An average stingray is 140cm long and weighs 40kg. They have long fins that they use to swim. Stingrays attack their prey many times. First they only use up to 45 volts. Then they attack many more times and can shock you up to 220 volts.

They aren't really aggressive animals but when they have to defend themselves against an attack they take it REALLY seriously.


Now I can tell you that there are about 500 different species of animals that can create electricity!!

Honestly I think that it’s really cool that animals can create electricity and don’t shock them selfs. But in my opinion the coolest thing is that an electric eel uses 50 times more volts than an average car.

Now you know that some animals have organs that carry electricity and create it. I hope you don’t get ZAPPED!


Books: Electric Circuits. Washington, D.C.: National Science Resources Center, 2006. Print.


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