(Anguilla anguilla)

Eels spawn far away in the Sargasso Sea, where their newly hatched larvae begin their migration by drifting with the ocean streams towards Europe. Eels arrive at Finnish shores around age six, at which point they have not only undergone a metamorphosis but have also travelled about 8,000 kilometres. The “yellow eels” stay at our shores for a few years until they reach sexual maturity and migrate to their spawning grounds in the Sargasso Sea. Before this, they undergo yet another metamorphosis and their colour changes to silver. At this point, the males are no more than half a meter long while the females are significantly larger. In addition to the migratory eels of the coastal waters, there are also eels in our inland waters mostly due to plantings. The eel is the longest living fish in Finland, the oldest eel found in Finland was seventy-two years old. The biggest eels at Maretarium are approximately a hundred and twenty centimetres long (that is approximately 47.24 inches), they weigh approximately three kilograms (that is 6.6 pounds) and they are born year 1976. Their age is known because they have been caught in lake Vesijärvi in Lahti where they were planted. Eel’s meat is very fatty and savoury, especially when it is smoked.