pectoral fin


: either of the fins of a fish that correspond to the forelimbs of a quadruped

Examples of pectoral fin in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web An alternative to this hold, as seen in the photo above, is to put a thumb firmly behind one pectoral fin with the other pectoral between the index and second finger. Joe Cermele, Field & Stream, 24 May 2023 The fish’s pectoral fins grew abnormally, and fluorescence appeared along both their leading and trailing edges, which showed that the skate’s enhancer was driving hoxa expression in both parts of the fin. Viviane Callier, Quanta Magazine, 30 May 2023 Grip them around the back of the head placing your thumb and forefinger on the back side of each pectoral fin. Joe Cermele, Field & Stream, 24 May 2023 Make your first cut behind the pectoral fin or gill cover, angling the tip of the knife slightly toward the head. Michael Stillwell, Popular Mechanics, 27 Mar. 2023 Pumping blood from the dorsal spines into the pectoral fins pushes the fins outward from the body, and pumping blood from one side of the tail to the other and back again results in a swimming motion. IEEE Spectrum, 19 June 2019 On Monday, the marine biologist went to the beach to get some measurements of the shark and found that someone had taken its tail, dorsal fin, pectoral fin, and the shark's teeth. Sarah Rumpf, Fox News, 7 Feb. 2023 Next, as if aware of an audience, the humpback rolled on its side and flapped a pectoral fin to splash the water. Walter Nicklin, Washington Post, 26 Aug. 2022 Other scans revealed the delicate bones of its pectoral fin. New York Times, 29 Apr. 2022 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'pectoral fin.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1715, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of pectoral fin was in 1715

Dictionary Entries Near pectoral fin

Cite this Entry

“Pectoral fin.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition

pectoral fin

: either of a pair of fins of a fish that correspond to the front limbs of a four-footed animal compare pelvic fin

More from Merriam-Webster on pectoral fin

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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