Brunswick Aquaculture



Glass Eels

American eels (Anguilla rostrata) occur in rivers and lakes on the eastern coast of North America, including in the Great Lakes and the Mississippi River. Their range stretches from Labrador, Canada down to parts of South America.

eel distribution

American eels have a unique life cycle, spawning in the ocean and then spending the majority of their life in freshwater. The adults spawn in the Sargasso Sea (in the Atlantic Ocean near Bermuda), after which they die from exhaustion. After hatching the larval stage of the American Eel, the leptocephalus, drifts with the water currents northward in the Gulf Stream. After metamorphosis the larvae transform into glass eels, and it is in this stage that they begin to move into the freshwater environment. They utilize tidal and coastal currents, coupled with active swimming, to move into coastal rivers. After entering freshwater they begin to darken and become elvers, a small version of the adult eel. The adult eels in freshwater are called yellow eels, and will generally remain in freshwater for 5 to 20 years before metamorphosing into silver eels which undertake a migration back to the Sargasso Sea to spawn.

eel life cycle



It is at the Glass Eel stage where they are harvested by Brunswick Aquaculture (Learn more about our fishing locations and methods on the ‘Fishing’ page). At this stage they are clear and very small. A kilogram of glass eels will be composed of 4200 to over 6000 individuals!


Brunswick Aquaculture Ltd. is a family owned and operated fishing company for elvers or “glass eels” located in New Brunswick, Canada.  It was founded by Phillip Holland, who held the first commercial elver license in Canada and has been in operation since 1988. 






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