ti·​la·​pia tə-ˈlä-pē-ə How to pronounce tilapia (audio)
plural tilapia also tilapias
: any of numerous chiefly African freshwater cichlid fishes (genera Oreochromis, Tilapia, and Sarotherodon) often raised for food

Examples of tilapia in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The fish ponds are no longer catch-and-release, the invasive tilapia that swim in them (and that guests catch) are now fed to rehabbed seals at a nearby animal sanctuary. Hugh Garvey, Sunset Magazine, 6 Nov. 2023 For those with a shellfish allergy, tilapia or snapper filets make a lovely substitute. Southern Living Editors, Southern Living, 18 Oct. 2023 Inspired by colleagues in a dozen other specialties, Mirza Melo, a veterinary ophthalmologist in northeastern Brazil's Ceará state, tested tilapia skin to treat a pervasive problem in her field: corneal ulcers and perforations, particularly in dogs with short snouts. Jill Langlois, Scientific American, 9 Sep. 2023 Unlike the smooth, dark meat of common carp, Asian carp have a flaky, white meat that’s low in fat and similar in flavor and texture (if not better than, some would say) to tilapia and catfish. Dac Collins, Outdoor Life, 9 Aug. 2023 After cooking and eating tilapia purchased from a local market in July, Laura Barajas, 40, fell ill almost immediately. Cara Lynn Shultz, Peoplemag, 18 Sep. 2023 Next to the barrel, minnow-sized tilapia swim in a smaller fish tank. Karina Elwood, Washington Post, 2 Apr. 2023 For those who don't want fried food, there is grilled salmon and tilapia. Moby Dick, The Courier-Journal, 20 Feb. 2023 Nearby, tomatoes, onions and herbs grow in soil enriched with the tilapias’ waste. oregonlive, 17 June 2023 See More

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

Word History


New Latin, genus name

First Known Use

1849, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of tilapia was in 1849

Dictionary Entries Near tilapia

Cite this Entry

“Tilapia.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/tilapia. Accessed 3 Dec. 2023.

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