What is a Fish, Interesting Facts and Trivia

Facts and Trivia Information about Fish and Fishes. Learn interesting things about fish. What is the difference between the words fish and fishes. What is the largest fish? What is the smallest fish? What is a slime coat? How many types of fish are there? Learn more about fish

The animal kingdom is represented by several types of animals, of which mammals may be the best known by most people. Fish too are represented in the animal kingdom characterized as beings that have gills for their entire life, have a skull, and vertebra (although this can be of cartilage or bone), and have fins for limbs.

There are many things about fish that most people do not know.

Fish Trivia and Facts

Sharks are fish and were around since the times of the Dinosaurs.

The word “Fish” can refer to one fish or several. The plural “Fishes” is used more often to refer to several types of fish.

Fish have a slime coat which protects them from bacteria and other infections. This slime coat is damaged when fish are handled.

School means a group of fish swimming together in synchronization.

Skoal means a group of fish that are loosely together but they swim and forage independently.

Studies have shown that fish do indeed feel pain.

Despite their names, Jellyfish, Cuttlefish, Crayfish, and Starfish, are not fish.

The worlds largest fish is the Whale Shark can grow up to 16 meters (58 ft).

The smallest fish discovered so far is less than a centimeter long (1/3 of an inch), the Stout Infantfish.

The Sailfish is the fastest swimming fish, reaching speeds of 110 km per hour (68 mph).

Some fish, known as Doctor Fish, are used in spas to give people pedicures.

Most fish are considered cold-blooded, but some, such as Tuna, can raise their body temperatures.

Some fish are can change their gender during their lifetime, and others, such as the Hamlet fish, are true hermaphrodites, having both male and female sex organs at the same time.

The majority of fish are egg layers, but some, such as Guppies, give birth to live young.

In some species, such as the Betta, and Seahorse, it is the male that tends the eggs.

Over 28,000 species of fish have been discovered.

clarkes clown fish

Clarke's Clown Fish - photo source

Although all fish have gills, some have other ways of breathing. The Betta fish, for example is one that has a Labyrinth organ and can gulp air from the surface, while Mudskippers can absorb air through their skin and often come out of the water.

People who study fish are called Ichthyologists.

The Lateral Line is a row of scales that runs from head to tail on most fish species. Under these scales are cells that help the fish detect movement and objects around it. This is one of the features fish use to hunt and swim in coordinated schools.

It was once believed fish are stupid had short memories. This belief was shattered when a teen taught a goldfish to swim through a maze. It later learned how to herd other fish through the maze.  See the Video Here.

It is a myth that goldfish will only grow to a size of the bowl they are kept in. In reality the water becomes so dirty in a small container that the fish are unnaturally stunted.

goldfish in bowl

photo source

In Rome, Italy, it is illegal for goldfish to be sold, or kept, in goldfish bowls.

Overfishing is threatening to wipe out some species of fish, including the Bluefin Tuna, a species that some experts say could be extinct within five years. To be fair overfishing would not occur if people were not demanding fish as food.

Some methods of sport fishing, such as “Catch and Release” are under fire for being cruel. Indeed many fish do not survive after being “caught and released”. Their slime coat is damaged, their mouth is injured, and they have been stressed.

Many species rely on fish as a food source.  Birds, bears, seals, some whales, crocodiles, and so forth, along with humans, also eat fish, as do other fish.

Reading on Other Animals

Exotic Pets

Fishes of the Worlds:  Reference Book


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Charlene Collins
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