pad·​dle·​fish | \ ˈpa-dᵊl-ˌfish How to pronounce paddlefish (audio) \

Definition of paddlefish

: any of a family (Polyodontidae) of ganoid fishes especially : a large food fish (Polyodon spathula) of the Mississippi River and its tributaries with a long paddle-shaped snout and with roe used in caviar

Illustration of paddlefish

Illustration of paddlefish

Examples of paddlefish in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Open river conditions often benefit native species like lake sturgeon and paddlefish, which can swim hundreds of miles in search of preferable habitat. Steve Hoffman / Forum News Service, Twin Cities, "More invasive carp confirmed in Mississippi and St. Croix rivers," 29 June 2019 In China, the installation of giant hydroelectric plants, such as the Ghezouba and Three Gorges Dams on the Yangtze River, has led to the likely extinction of the Chinese paddlefish, one of the world’s largest freshwater fish species. Stefan Lovgren, National Geographic, "Two-thirds of the longest rivers no longer flow freely—and it's harming us," 8 May 2019 The article told the tale of a lucky angler who snagged a 100-pound-plus paddlefish (another name for spoonbill) while fishing for bluegill at Jacomo. Tyler Mahoney Special To The Star, kansascity, "Lake Jacomo fisherman happens across a monster while fishing for bass," 13 June 2018 Lewis Shuckman, owner of Shuckman's Fish Co. in western Louisville, has been selling paddlefish caviar for almost 20 years. Bailey Loosemore, The Courier-Journal, "Kentucky is swimming with potential to take over the US caviar market," 28 June 2018 Koerner fills the lakes with young paddlefish and pays the owners of the lakes a portion of her proceeds. Bailey Loosemore, The Courier-Journal, "Kentucky is swimming with potential to take over the US caviar market," 28 June 2018 Catching a giant paddlefish weighing 50 or 100 pounds is an altogether different pursuit. New York Times, "Hooking the Dinosaur of Fish," 26 May 2018 Last year, 273 paddlefish were caught on opening day. New York Times, "Hooking the Dinosaur of Fish," 26 May 2018 Bring a rod on the 8.8-mile Hell’s Half Acre loop, rich in paddlefish. The Editors, Outside Online, "The 25 Trips You Need to Take This Year," 20 Mar. 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of paddlefish

1807, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about paddlefish

Statistics for paddlefish

Last Updated

13 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for paddlefish

The first known use of paddlefish was in 1807

See more words from the same year

More from Merriam-Webster on paddlefish

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with paddlefish Encyclopedia article about paddlefish

Comments on paddlefish

What made you want to look up paddlefish? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


something desired as essential

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

What's that Smell?! Quiz

  • wide eyed dog smelling rose
  • Someone who is hircine smells like a:
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!