Loch Ness giant eel (SciiFii)
The Loch Ness giant eel (Anguilla giganteum) is a species of giant eel that originally did not exist, but has since been created by SciiFii and introduced throughout Great Britain to help boost biodiversity. The small Loch Ness giant eels feed on insect larvae, molluscs, worms, and crustaceans. The diet of larger specimens consists predominately of other fishes, although they do also feed on eggs of other fish to keep the fish population under control. Loch Ness giant eels do not feed during the cold months. The Loch Ness giant eels are the largest freshwater eels in the world, growing on average length of around 20 feet long and weigh about 150 pounds, although larger specimens about 25 feet long and weighing 200 pounds have been recorded. Unlike many other migrating fish, eels begin their life cycle in the ocean and spend most of their lives in fresh inland water, or brackish coastal water, returning to the ocean to spawn and then die. The larvae (leptocephali) drift towards Great Britain in a 300-day migration. When approaching Great Britain's coast, the larvae metamorphose into a transparent larval stage called "glass eel", enter estuaries, and many start migrating upstream. After entering their continental habitat, the glass eels metamorphose into elvers, miniature versions of the adult eels. As the eel grows, it becomes known as a "yellow eel" due to the brownish-yellow color of their sides and belly. After 5–20 years in fresh or brackish water, the eels become sexually mature, their eyes grow larger, their flanks become silver, and their bellies white in color. In this stage, the eels are known as "silver eels", and they begin their migration back to the Sargasso Sea to spawn. The Loch Ness giant eels also have longer lifespans than their much smaller relatives, the critically endangered European eels (Anguilla anguilla), with lifespans usually around 150-175 years, although some can live around 200 years. The conservation status of the Loch Ness giant eel is Endangered due to overfishing and some habitat loss due to pollution, however, the conservationists are working hard to protect this species.
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