butterfish

butterfish

[buht-er-fish]
noun, plural (especially collectively) butterfishes (especially referring to two or more kinds or species) butterfish.
1.
a small, flattened, marine food fish, Peprilus triacanthus, of Atlantic coastal waters of the U.S., having very small scales and smooth skin.
2.
the rock gunnel.
See under gunnel1.


Origin:
1665–75; butter + fish

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World English Dictionary
butterfish (ˈbʌtəˌfɪʃ)
 
n , pl -fish, -fishes
1.  an eel-like blennioid food fish, Pholis gunnellus, occurring in North Atlantic coastal regions: family Pholidae (gunnels). It has a slippery scaleless golden brown skin with a row of black spots along the base of the long dorsal fin
2.  greenbone, Also called: marari an edible reef fish, Coridodax pullus, of esp S New Zealand. It has a slippery purplish-grey to olive-green skin and is often found browsing on kelp

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Encyclopedia Britannica
Encyclopedia

butterfish

any of the thin, deep-bodied, more or less oval and silvery fishes of the family Stromateidae (order Perciformes). Butterfishes are found in warm and temperate seas and are characterized by a small mouth, forked tail, and a single dorsal fin. Like the related rudderfishes (Centrolophidae) and man-of-war fishes (Nomeidae), they also have peculiar, toothed outpocketings in the esophagus. (In some systems of classification Centrolophidae and Nomeidae are included in Stromateidae.)

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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