Juvenile eels, known as elvers, have a remarkable climbing ability – they can even ascend vertical walls if the surface is wet and rough. During the day they seek cover in cracks under waterfalls. They lose their climbing ability once they reach about 12 centimetres (weighing some 5 grams). After this they are probably too heavy for surface tension to hold them to rock faces. By climbing, and slithering overland through wet grass, eels can colonise remote and inaccessible waterways.
Te whakamahi i tēnei tūemi
Photograph by Rowan Strickland
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