Eels away from water

To: Graham Turner <>, Baus <>
Subject: Eels away from water
From: Syd Curtis <>
Date: Thu, 27 Jul 2006 21:56:13 +1000
Further to eels and snakes as Stork food.

I don't imagine this situation is unique, but we used to see/catch eels in
the creek above Curtis Falls in Joalah N. P. on Tamborine Mountain (inland
from the Gold Coast).  The falls have a vertical drop of what - 10, 15 m.

If it is still considered that all eels breed at sea (is it?) then they must
have trekked/slithered a considerable distance overland to get around the
falls.  I quote from the EELS entry in the Angus and Robertson  Australian
Encyclopaedia (published c. 1958):

    "Despite an earlier popular belief that is not yet wholly dispelled,
freshwater eels can breed only in the sea;  the adults migrate there solely
for that purpose, usually at a time when the stream they inhabit is in
flood.  Those inhabiting waterholes or lagoons travel overland at night
through wet grass, moving with unerring instinct towards their goal.

    "...; the young make their way in large numbers to the river-mouths,
develop into "elvers", congregate in estuaries, and surmount  apparently
impossible obstacles on their way upstream."



[BTW, the same article notes that "the longest eel known to science in
Australia is a specimen of Evenchelys, 13 feet long and weighing 24 pounds."
I make that 4 m and 11 kg - that's some eel!]


> From: "Graham Turner" <>
> Date: Thu, 27 Jul 2006 14:45:13 +1000
> To: "Baus" <>
> Subject: Re: [Birding-Aus] Black-necked Stork eating snake
> G'day all,
> just to confuse matters. Several snake species spend time in
> the water, red-belly black snakes, tiger snakes even pythons. And to really
> confuse matters I have seen eels in damp leaf litter adjacent to streams and
> in hollow logs near water. This seems to happen especially in winter (having
> a backpack electrofisher is a very useful tool).
> Cheers
> Graham Turner

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