Dozens of “zombie-like” bass have been seen rising out of Tennessee Valley Authority lakes lately. However there is nothing supernatural going on according to biologists who are using “electrofishing” to study them.
Basically, electrofishing involves sending a low-powered (6-amp) charge down about 8 feet into the water via a generator to stun the fish so they rise to the surface where they can be easily netted and placed into an aerated holding tank while researchers measure, weigh them, and check for any parasites or diseases while they remained in a trance-like state. Once they snap out of it, the fish are placed back into the lakes and are able to swim away.
Although PETA and other animal advocates argue that the fish “feel pain,” John Justice, a fisheries biologist with TVA, contend that this is a much more “humane” way to conduct the surveys and “much easier on the fish and other wildlife, including the occasional turtle or snake, than the previous practice of dousing a sealed-off cove with a chemical compound called rotenone, which killed fish so they could be scooped out and counted.”