Justified & Ancient
- May 30, 2009
- Reaction score
As a former diver, I have seen many congers in the wild. A large female may be about 3 metres/10 feet long with a head similar in size to that of a Jack Russell terrier. I have also seen morays, most of which are smaller. The largest recognised species of eel are the giant moray and the longer but thinner slender giant moray. These reach a known maximum length of just under 4 metres.
All of these are spectacular creatures and would give you a nasty bite.
I know that the common eel (a freshwater species) is known to travel across wet ground from one water course to another. Basic geometry says that this will be more difficult for a large specimen. Using a simple example, an eel twice as long has 4 times the cross section and 8 times the mass. As the eel gets longer, its oxygen demands increase proportionately to the cube of its length. The bigger an eel is, the harder it will be for it to move any significant distance across land.
I cannot see that any known species of eel would be able to kill and eat a sheep at a single sitting. If you have examples, I would genuinely (i.e. I am not being sarcastic) be interested to read of them.
There is a case from Ireland in 1907. I'v e written an article on the cae and it's in the next issue of FT. The naga sounds more reptillian than fish-like. I don't think it's a eel.