electroreception

electroreception
the ability to make and receive electrical impulses and use these to distinguish objects by the different resistance and capacitance values. Fish can communicate by modulating the electrical waveform they generate. Fish may use active electroreception, generating small, usually less than one volt, electrical pulses using an organ in the tail consisting of two to five rows of modified muscle cells called electrocytes. This has a range of about one body length. Fish can also use passive electroreception where the fish senses the weak bioelectric fields of other organisms. This is found in sharks, for example, using the ampullae of Lorenzini, q.v

Dictionary of ichthyology. 2009.

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