Just this week, two wolf eels moved into YVR’s 114,000-litre aquarium located in the departures area of the International Terminal. The new residents are massively misunderstood; they’re like the Hunchback of YVR, the Beast to YVR’s Beauty, and many other gentle giant references.
Our wolf eels, appearing fierce and grotesque but are actually quite friendly, were introduced yesterday as part of an ongoing Vancouver Aquarium study on the reproduction of the eel-like fish.
Wolf eels aren’t actually eels – they’re fish with an elongated body and a dorsal fin that extends from their head to the end of their six-to-eight-foot-long body.
The fish have large teeth used to feed on crustaceans, sea urchins, mussels, clams and some fish, crushing them with their strong jaws.Look closely and the wolf eels can be spotted peering out of crevices in the aquarium.
The species are monogamous by nature, finding a partner around the age of four years old. It is hoped that our eels –which have a strong connection to one another, according to biologists monitoring them – will lay an egg mass (up to 10,000 eggs at one time!) right here at YVR.
If that’s not some good pre-flight entertainment, I don’t know what is! If you’re travelling through the International Terminal, stop by the Aquarium and see if you can spot our love-birds.