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Tuna - longfin eel

Fast Facts
  • Longfin eel are the biggest freshwater eel in the world and are our top freshwater predator.

    • Males grow up to 1m long

    • Females can grow to 2m in length!

  • Are endemic - found no-where else in the world.

  • Like to spend daytime under banks, rocks and logs.

  • Come out at night to feed on insect larvae, snails, fish, koura, dead animals and birds.

Longfin eels by John Sullivan @Flickr

  • Have bad eyesight but an amazing sense of smell. (their nostrils stick out from the end of their nose)  

  • Have small rows of small sharp teeth that point backwards.

  • Have slime that helps them to breed and protects their skin out of water. They produce more slime when stressed and absorb 50% of their oxygen through their skin.

  • Young eels are called elvers and some can climb 40 metre high obstacles.

  • Longfin eels have an amazing lifecycle (click the image to go to a larger version)

Longfn eel lifecycle

​Check out the video below to learn more about tuna, and how Ngāti Hikairo and Genesis Energy are working together to help them.

Find out more
Genesis Energy
Department of Conservation - Te Papa Atawhai
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