Multilingual flashcard: Fish
There are 33, 600 known species of fish in the world, with more diversity than any other vertebrate species. They are important to humans, both as a cultural icon and as a food source, with one sixth of the world’s protein provided by fish and fish products.
The most commonly used collective nouns for fish are shoal and school, with a shoal denoting a group of fish which are loosely grouped and a school denoting those that move in a synchronised mass. Certain species of fish also have their own specific collective noun.
Fish are regularly threatened by habitat destruction and overfishing, with certain species harder hit than others.
Culturally, fish have significance in various countries and religions – for example, in Buddhsm they represent happiness because of their freedom. Early Christians used the ichthys, a symbol of a fish, to represent Jesus, because the Greek word for fish, ΙΧΘΥΣ Ichthys, could be used as an acronym for “Ίησοῦς Χριστός, Θεοῦ Υἱός, Σωτήρ” (Iesous Christos, Theou Huios, Soter), meaning “Jesus Christ, Son of God, Saviour”.
Even when we weren’t able to have other pets, my family has always had fish and I have spent hours watching them. I also love going to aquariums and find the undersea world so fascinating, especially as there is so much of it that we have yet to discover! We need to make sure that we don’t destroy these delicate ecosystems with pollution before we ever fully understand what we’re losing.
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Did you learn anything new?
Whilst most fish are not endangered, they are still a much-loved and necessary part of many ocean ecosystems – I am hoping to raise awareness of the plastic and other pollutants in the sea and the impact that they are having on sea-life.
Thanks for reading!