One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A large predatory freshwater fish of the carp family, with a slender body and large mouth, found in western North America.
Genus Ptychocheilus, family Cyprinidae: several species, in particular the northern squawfish (P. oregonensis)
- ‘Mercury occurred in concentrations above acceptable limits in rainbow trout and northern squawfish from Okanagan Lake and in northern squawfish from Skaha and Osoyoos Lakes.’
- ‘When this and other squawfish spawn in the upper Gunnison River, their young are carried downstream by the current and may spill over the Redlands Diversion Dam.’
- ‘In my search across the internet, I have yet to come across anyone who fly fishes for squawfish.’
- ‘With its large mouth and torpedo-shaped body, the Colorado squawfish is an efficient predator on other fishes.’
- ‘The northern squawfish also preys effectively on game fish, and often becomes the dominant species in reservoirs, despite biologists’ efforts to limit their population size.’
Late 19th century: from squaw + fish.
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