Taser Technology: The Eel Had It First

Recent experiments on Amazonian electric eels conducted by Vanderbilt University have uncovered the incredible similarity between the eel’s electrical shock mechanism and that of a modern taser gun. The study, conducted over a nine-month period, not only revealed great similarity between the eel’s natural shocking abilities and a taser, but it also proved the eel’s equipment to be far superior to that possessed by man.

In a gigantic aquarium, the voltage levels of the electric signals sent out by several large eels were measured. Additionally, high-speed cameras, which run at 1,000 frames a second, captured detailed imagery of the eel’s hunting techniques. The eels were found to track prey with low-voltage waves, stun them with doublets or triplets of medium-strength waves, and finish them off with a volley of high-voltage waves. It only took a tenth of a second for an eel to strike its victim, and fish were completely paralyzed within four milliseconds of being struck.

Further experimentation found that the eel overwhelms the nerves of its victims rather than directly affecting their muscles. This is just what a taser gun does. The taser shoots out 19 pulses a second, but the eel delivers about 400 pulses in that same amount of time. The taser only causes a portion of the muscles in the body of a target to contract, but the eel’s rays make every single muscle of a fish contract within a split second. Once again, nature had it first, and nature had it better. Now, back to doing my QNet Christmas shopping!

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