Definitions for paddlefishˈpæd lˌfɪʃ
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paddlefish, duckbill, Polyodon spathula(noun)
primitive fish of the Mississippi valley having a long paddle-shaped snout
Any of several primitive fish, of the family Polyodontidae, that have a long snout shaped like a paddle.
a large ganoid fish (Polyodon spathula) found in the rivers of the Mississippi Valley. It has a long spatula-shaped snout. Called also duck-billed cat, and spoonbill sturgeon
Paddlefish are primitive Chondrostean ray-finned fishes. The paddlefish can be distinguished by its large mouth and its elongated, spatula-like snout, called a rostrum, which is longer than the rest of the head. These fish are not closely related to sharks, which are in a different taxonomic class, but they do have some body parts that resemble those of sharks such as their skeletons, primarily composed of cartilage, and their deeply forked heterocercal tail fins. The age of this type of fish is hard to determine but many scientists think that they live 50 years or more. There are only two modern species of these fish: the Chinese paddlefish and the American paddlefish. Both have declined greatly in abundance, and the Chinese species may now be extinct. In some areas, paddlefish are referred to as "Spoonbill", "Spoonies" or "Spoonbill Catfish". The American species is Missouri's State Aquatic Animal.
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