lungfish

noun

lung·​fish ˈləŋ-ˌfish How to pronounce lungfish (audio)
: any of an order (Dipnoi) of bony fishes that breathe by a modified swim bladder as well as gills

Illustration of lungfish

Illustration of lungfish

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Fifty of the species were turtles, with tuataras (a kind of reptile found in New Zealand), caecilians (a limbless amphibian), and the South American lungfish rounding out the group. Zoe Sottile, CNN, 13 Nov. 2022 Some present-day fish, like lungfish and bichirs, have lungs that evolved from swim bladders that help keep them afloat, per the statement. Margaret Osborne, Smithsonian Magazine, 16 Sep. 2022 Some, like the appropriately named lungfish, still use them to breathe air. Stephanie Pappas, Scientific American, 15 Sep. 2022 The International Union for Conservation of Nature’s Red List classifies Australian lungfish as endangered. Kayla Samoy, Chicago Tribune, 21 June 2022 Australian lungfish are one of the few fish species that can breathe both underwater via gills and in the air with lungs. Kayla Samoy, Chicago Tribune, 21 June 2022 Methuselah is a 4-foot-long, 40-pound Australian lungfish that was brought to the San Francisco museum in 1938 from Australia. Haven Daley, USA TODAY, 27 Jan. 2022 Methuselah is a 4-foot-long, 40-pound Australian lungfish that was brought to the San Francisco museum in 1938 from Australia. Haven Daley, USA TODAY, 27 Jan. 2022 Methuselah is a 4-foot-long, 40-pound Australian lungfish that was brought to the San Francisco museum in 1938 from Australia. Haven Daley, USA TODAY, 27 Jan. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'lungfish.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

First Known Use

1883, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of lungfish was in 1883

Dictionary Entries Near lungfish

Cite this Entry

“Lungfish.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/lungfish. Accessed 2 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition

lungfish

noun

lung·​fish ˈləŋ-ˌfish How to pronounce lungfish (audio)
: any of various fishes that breathe with structures resembling lungs as well as with gills

More from Merriam-Webster on lungfish

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