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[luhng-fish] /ˈlʌŋˌfɪʃ/
noun, plural (especially collectively) lungfish (especially referring to two or more kinds or species) lungfishes.
any of various slender, air-breathing fishes of the order (or subclass) Dipnoi, of rivers and lakes in Africa, South America, and Australia, having a lunglike air bladder as well as gills and growing to a length of 3 to 6 feet (0.9 to 1.8 meters).
Origin of lungfish
1880-85; lung + fish Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for lungfish
  • Apes would have seemed impossible to the first lungfish.
  • Living lobe-fins include lungfish, which have gills but can also breathe air using modified swim bladders that act as lungs.
  • lungfish are thought to be related to the first creatures that crawled out of the water to colonize land.
British Dictionary definitions for lungfish


noun (pl) -fish, -fishes
any freshwater bony fish of the subclass Dipnoi, having an air-breathing lung, fleshy paired fins, and an elongated body. The only living species are those of the genera Lepidosiren of South America, Protopterus of Africa, and Neoceratodus of Australia
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for lungfish

1883, from lung + fish (n.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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lungfish in Science

Any of several tropical freshwater fish of the order or subclass Dipnoi that, in addition to having gills, have lunglike organs for breathing air. Lungfish have a long, narrow body, and certain species can survive periods of drought inside a mucus-lined cocoon in the mud. The lungfish and the coelacanths are the only living lobe-finned fishes.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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