What do eels eat? Ducks? Fish?

Monday, July 12, 2010
Spare duck, maam?


What do eels eat? Ducks? Fish?


Well apparently Boris the eel likes to eat baby ducklings so we might be on to something. But first what are eels?


Eels are elongated fishes, and look like snakes. Most eels prefer to dwell in shallow waters or hide at the bottom layer of the ocean, sometimes in holes. Some eels dwell in water as deep as 4,000 metres (13,000 ft). Others are fairly active swimmers and some have even been known to travel across dry land in search of bodies of water. 


Did I leave the oven on?
But what do they eat? This article suggests that a freshwater eel is believed responsible for the disappearance of water fowl, small ducks and possibly birds at the pond near the Eagle Vale Leisure Centre, somewhere in Australia.


New Zealand's department of Conservation's site tells us that freshwater eels eat "live" food. Small long-finned eels living amongst the river gravels will feed on insect larvae, worms and water snails. When they get bigger, they begin to feed on fish. They will also eat fresh-water crayfish and even small birds like ducklings (like Boris!).

Sometimes however, eels with find themselves on the back foot - nature will strike back and in return for eating a swan's sweet tasty little goslings, the swan will simply eat the eel!


No gag reflex?
Humans also love to eat eels as well. The Japanese and Maori people are well known to love eel on their sushi or smoked. And sometimes kids land grown up kids love to go eeling for the sake of it:




And another proud Kiwi family showing off their catch:



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