The electric eel dwells in the freshwater rivers of the lower Amazon basin in South America. The rainforest environment provides a diet of smaller freshwater fish, and amphibians.

  Although the electric eel is occasionally eaten by local people in the Amazon, it is largely avoided due to its ability to deliver a powerful shock. When the eel is caught in fishermen's nets, the other fish are often found dead due to the shocks from the eel. It has been known to discharge electric shocks up to eight hours after death due to continued activity in the electric organs along the eels tail.

 Another distinguishing feature about the Amazon river habitat is the low concentration of dissolved oxygen in the water. For this reason the eel surfaces frequently, as previously mentioned, to gain sufficient oxygen for respiration. Up to 78% of the total oxygen intake is from the atmosphere, as opposed to the 22% extracted by the gills. Emission of carbon dioxide is done primarily through the skin (81%), but a small amount of C02 is emitted through the mouth (19%). 

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