Electric eel lights up Christmas tree at Tennessee Aquarium

Miguel Wattson is charging up the Christmas spirit.

Miguel, of course, is an electric eel housed at the Tennessee Aquarium, who is positively merry.

So merry, in fact, his electric jolts are turning on the festive lights at the aquarium’s Christmas tree.

“The rapid, dim blinking of the lights is caused by the constant, low-voltage blips of electricity he releases when he’s trying to find food,” Aquarist Kimberly Hurt said in a statement.

“The bigger flashes are caused by the higher voltage shocks he emits when he’s eating or excited,” she added.

Aquarists hope it “sparks a new love and appreciation” for the freshwater fish.

Miguel also has a Twitter account with tweets also triggered by jolts of electricity.

But back to the tree.

“The intensity of the lights reflects the strength of my discharges as detected by sensors in my tank,” the critter explained online.

The program, on until Dec. 24, is called “shocking around the Christmas tree.”

“Whenever Miguel discharges electricity, sensors in the water deliver the charge to a set of speakers,” Joey Turnipseed, the Aquarium’s audio visual production specialist, said in a statement. “The speakers convert the discharge into the sound you hear and the festively flashing lights.”

Yule definitely love it.

But please don’t ask Santa for one.

“The best way to see an Electric Eel lighting up a Christmas Tree is at the Tennessee Aquarium,” the facility added, “but just as a gentle reminder, even though they would fit in one nicely, electric eels do not make good stocking stuffers.”

Photos Tennessee Aquarium

About the author

Recovering newspaper reporter.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.