Legless LAND Dwelling Fish
muffy

Macclesfield, UK

#41 Dec 5, 2013
Subduction Zone wrote:
<quoted text>
Instead of constantly asking stupid questions and getting answers that you do not understand why not try to learn a bit about biology? If you are willing to watch a few videos I am sure that we could recommend some so that you could figure out the answers to these questions yourself.
Isn't that what you really want anyway?
You previously told me that newts and humans are fish, in some sense, so I feel like you know where I'm coming from even if I can't explain it right!

I'm willing to watch a video that explains what makes us choose to call one animal a fish but not the next. It just seems random and badly defined :-(

“Pissing people off since 1949”

Level 8

Since: Apr 08

Seffner, FL

#42 Dec 5, 2013
muffy wrote:
<quoted text>
Why are sharks fish but whales not?
Among other characteristics, sharks have gills but no lungs while whales have lungs but no gills.

Is there some reason why you have to ask such a ridiculously silly questions?

“Think&Care”

Since: Oct 07

Location hidden

#43 Dec 5, 2013
muffy wrote:
<quoted text>
Why are sharks fish but whales not?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shark

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whale

“Do not bend, fold, staple or”

Level 9

Since: Jan 11

mutilate. Point down range.

#44 Dec 5, 2013
muffy wrote:
<quoted text>
Why are sharks fish but whales not?
You ask these questions, but you don't seem to like the answers that you get.

What is it that you want to know?

May I suggest checking out a basic biology text from the library. Even if it does not give you the specific answers you seek, it may provide you with an understanding of the answers you get.

“Think&Care”

Since: Oct 07

Location hidden

#45 Dec 5, 2013
muffy wrote:
<quoted text>
Why are sharks fish but whales not?
First, the term 'fish' is not a biological classification. Different types of fish have very different biological characteristics. This is why the term fist is called 'paraphyletic'.

Specifically, the term fish excludes the tetrapods (amphibians, reptiles, mammals, birds) in the definition. So, salamanders, which are tetrapods are not fish. Whales are also tetrapods (in fact, they are mammals), so they are also not fish.

The special thing about the species in the article is that they have very related species that are completely aquatic, but the species itself lives mostly on rocks in the splash zone. Biologically, the blennies are perciformes, which means they are part of the order of bony fishes.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blennioidei
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Perciformes

Since the specific species studied in the article is a biologically a perciforme (so it is a bony fish biologically) but it also lives primarily out of the water, it is an example of the type of transitional species creationists like to claim does not exist.

Now, you like to get confused partly because you refuse to learn the actual scientific vocabulary necessary to really understand the biology. If you learned and studied a bit more, you would know why whales are not 'fish' and why blennies are. You would also understand why salamanders are not fish (being of a different order than any of the fish).

Lack of education is not a fault in itself. But when you refuse to learn and don't want to do the work for actual understanding, and then ask questions based on ignorance, then there is a problem.

“Do not bend, fold, staple or”

Level 9

Since: Jan 11

mutilate. Point down range.

#46 Dec 5, 2013
muffy wrote:
<quoted text>
Except you've pointed out that if most lungfish tried to breathe only through their gills they would die. Are they still fish? Newts breathe through their gills. Are they fish?
<quoted text>
So it's just like an amphibian? Which are not considered fish because...?
<quoted text>
You mean "normal fish" like dogfish or "normal fish" like catfish? Catfish being more closely related to actual cats than to dogfish. Coelacanths are more closely related to dolphins than to most other fish but "scientists" complain when kids say that dolphins are fish.
<quoted text>
No need for the insult. I'm sure you're smarter than me and know more so why don't we just agree on that. Ha ha, I'm dumber than you. Ok, so with that out of the way, what's the deal with fish? They don't seem to have a defining characteristic that they all share, or that other animals don't share. Any new species found, like this land-living one, seem to be called fish just because they look like one. I was hoping that maybe this was some evidence for evolution, that maybe an animal was found that had crossed the fish/non-fish divide, but I was obviously wrong. I've been told lots of times that this is still just a fish, so I don't see what the big deal is.
The bottom line is that I'm more confused than ever. I thought that maybe this was important evidence, I'd better understand why this is important, but now after much arguing I find out this is just a new fish. So what's the point?
I was hoping there would be some kind of consensus or helpful explanation but I've not read any yet. Ok, maybe I'm dumb and it's really obvious but am I alone in thinking this is why lots of people are turned off science?
You say they are called fish because they look like one. So you have a key in your head of what a fish is even though your questions indicate doubt about what a fish is. So this fish looks like a fish but lives on land. Further investigation would reveal that it has a number of characters that define it as a fish including gills. I would point out that it isn't just characters, but the association of the characters that are used to define what group an animal is classified into. The classification system is artificial and there is room for argument. However, the argument needs to be based on evidence and it would have to be extremely and incredibly compelling to reclassify this fish to another group or create a whole new group to include it.

People are turned off science because they often don't understand it. This is not to say they are stupid, but they want simple, fast food answers to complex problems. Science knows a lot but it doesn't know everything otherwise there would be no point for it to exist. By being here and asking questions, it doesn't sound like you are turned off by science, but just not understanding it well.
The Dude

Birkenhead, UK

#47 Dec 5, 2013
muffy wrote:
<quoted text>
Evolution predicted the discovery of yet another fish that has no new characteristics? Good job science! Whatever next? I predict that a new beetle will be discovered within the next two months.
No, evolution predicted the discovery of yet another animal with traits of both land and aquatic animals, thus demonstrating that the transition from aquatic animal to land animal is possible via evolution. And we'll go further - if they get around to sequencing the genome of this thing it's DNA will be closer to fish and amphibians, somewhat less so to reptiles, somewhat less than that to birds, and less again to mammals such as humans - in that order. It's not simply a matter of "predicting" a new creature will be found. It's predicting that organism is consistent with nested hierarchies observed in the fossil record, comparative anatomy *and* DNA.

Remember, your ignorance of science is not a valid critique.
muffy

Glasgow, UK

#48 Dec 5, 2013
MikeF wrote:
<quoted text>
Among other characteristics, sharks have gills but no lungs while whales have lungs but no gills.
Is there some reason why you have to ask such a ridiculously silly questions?
I know it seems like a silly question, but when there are newts (not fish) with gills and lungfish (fish) without functional gills, it makes me question whether the presence or absence of gills has anything to do with whether an animal is classified as a fish or not.
muffy

Glasgow, UK

#49 Dec 5, 2013
polymath257 wrote:
<quoted text>
First, the term 'fish' is not a biological classification. Different types of fish have very different biological characteristics. This is why the term fist is called 'paraphyletic'.
Genuinely interesting answer, and one that makes the most sense so far, thank you.
polymath257 wrote:
Specifically, the term fish excludes the tetrapods (amphibians, reptiles, mammals, birds) in the definition. So, salamanders, which are tetrapods are not fish. Whales are also tetrapods (in fact, they are mammals), so they are also not fish.
So why are they split out separate from the other groups we happen to call fish? Just because there are a lot of them and they tend to look/behave/live somewhere different? I guess I could understand that.
polymath257 wrote:
The special thing about the species in the article is that they have very related species that are completely aquatic, but the species itself lives mostly on rocks in the splash zone. Biologically, the blennies are perciformes, which means they are part of the order of bony fishes.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blennioidei
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Perciformes
Since the specific species studied in the article is a biologically a perciforme (so it is a bony fish biologically) but it also lives primarily out of the water, it is an example of the type of transitional species creationists like to claim does not exist.
Ok, so we have a species of fish very much like some others, but this one chooses to live out of the water which makes it interesting. For it to be obviously transitional with regards to being terrestrial, it has to lead to a future species that spends all its time out of the water. I'm not interested in arguing whether that will happen or not for now, I'll assume it does for now. How much would it have to change for scientists to say its not a fish or whatever but it's now something else? I'm not expecting an exact answer because I understand the general idea that these things happen slowly.

Maybe this isn't interesting to anyone else but I'm still a bit fascinated with what makes a fish a fish from a pedantic point of view!
muffy

Glasgow, UK

#50 Dec 5, 2013
The Dude wrote:
<quoted text>
No, evolution predicted the discovery of yet another animal with traits of both land and aquatic animals, thus demonstrating that the transition from aquatic animal to land animal is possible via evolution. And we'll go further - if they get around to sequencing the genome of this thing it's DNA will be closer to fish and amphibians, somewhat less so to reptiles, somewhat less than that to birds, and less again to mammals such as humans - in that order. It's not simply a matter of "predicting" a new creature will be found. It's predicting that organism is consistent with nested hierarchies observed in the fossil record, comparative anatomy *and* DNA.
Remember, your ignorance of science is not a valid critique.
I thought I knew the answer to this but I'm not so sure I do any more, but would it have DNA closer to a shark or to a human?

“Do not bend, fold, staple or”

Level 9

Since: Jan 11

mutilate. Point down range.

#51 Dec 5, 2013
muffy wrote:
<quoted text>
I know it seems like a silly question, but when there are newts (not fish) with gills and lungfish (fish) without functional gills, it makes me question whether the presence or absence of gills has anything to do with whether an animal is classified as a fish or not.
Whether functional or not, lungfish still have gills. In some species they do function. It isn't just that fish possess gills that define them as you have noted since other animals (amphibians) do possess them. Taxonomists consider a number of characters and the condition of those characters in determining what classification a particular organism falls under.

The platypus and echidna lay eggs, but are classified as primitive mammals. Bats have wings, like birds and insects, but are not classified as either.

“Pissing people off since 1949”

Level 8

Since: Apr 08

Seffner, FL

#52 Dec 5, 2013
muffy wrote:
<quoted text>
I know it seems like a silly question, but when there are newts (not fish) with gills and lungfish (fish) without functional gills, it makes me question whether the presence or absence of gills has anything to do with whether an animal is classified as a fish or not.
As I said earlier, the presence of gills are only one of several characteristics of fish. Hermit crabs have gills but are not fish.

"A fish is any member of a paraphyletic group of organisms that consist of all gill-bearing aquatic craniate animals that lack limbs with digits."

If you really want a full answer, read this:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fish

Since: Mar 11

St. Croix valley

#53 Dec 5, 2013
MikeF wrote:
<quoted text>
As I said earlier, the presence of gills are only one of several characteristics of fish. Hermit crabs have gills but are not fish.
"A fish is any member of a paraphyletic group of organisms that consist of all gill-bearing aquatic craniate animals that lack limbs with digits."
If you really want a full answer, read this:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fish
Kevin Costner had gills in Waterworld and he wasn't a fish. several of his movies laid there looking and smelling like dead fish...does that mean a movie can be a fish? can we call it Wanda?

“Think&Care”

Since: Oct 07

Location hidden

#54 Dec 5, 2013
muffy wrote:
So why are they split out separate from the other groups we happen to call fish? Just because there are a lot of them and they tend to look/behave/live somewhere different? I guess I could understand that.
Not just. For example, salamanders have lungs, they have limbs with bones and muscles in them. Their skeletons are quite different than typical bony fish. This puts them squarely in a different category from bony fish.

Whales also have lungs, are warm blooded, give live birth, and a host of other characteristics that identify them as mammals. While occasional fish can have some of these characteristics, they don't have all of them and even the ones they do have are different in detail.
Ok, so we have a species of fish very much like some others, but this one chooses to live out of the water which makes it interesting. For it to be obviously transitional with regards to being terrestrial, it has to lead to a future species that spends all its time out of the water. I'm not interested in arguing whether that will happen or not for now, I'll assume it does for now. How much would it have to change for scientists to say its not a fish or whatever but it's now something else? I'm not expecting an exact answer because I understand the general idea that these things happen slowly.
A couple of comments:
1. To be transitional doesn't necessarily mean that the future has to be completely terrestrial. It is enough that itis showing significant differences to related species.

2. Classification is a human endeavor. Nature frequently violates our ideas of how things 'must be'. The lines we draw are for *our* benefit and may be violated by the real world.

3. How much change is required to begin a new classification is a matter of a lot of debate. There are 'lumpers' and 'splitters' among taxonomists: some people like to put a lot of variety into one category and others like to split categories into smaller pieces. Once again, the lines we draw are for our benefit and are useful as long as they help us understand the wide variety that is seen in nature.

Maybe this isn't interesting to anyone else but I'm still a bit fascinated with what makes a fish a fish from a pedantic point of view!
Once again, from a pedantic point of view, the term 'fish' is ambiguous and not a clearly marked biological category. You can, however, look at major categories, such as the 'bony fish' or the 'cartilaginous fish' and will be able to get much more definitive answers there. In particular, we need to consider not simply the life cycle, but the anatomy and physiology in making our classifications.

“Pissing people off since 1949”

Level 8

Since: Apr 08

Seffner, FL

#55 Dec 5, 2013
woodtick57 wrote:
<quoted text>Kevin Costner had gills in Waterworld and he wasn't a fish. several of his movies laid there looking and smelling like dead fish...does that mean a movie can be a fish? can we call it Wanda?
You'll have to check with John Cleese on that.

Level 9

Since: Sep 08

Everett, WA

#56 Dec 5, 2013
A lot of groups of animals were named and categorized before we understood evolution. Now we can be a bit more scientific about it.

One thing you might study up on is the concept of Clades. A clade is a group with a common ancestor. It might be a group as small as you and your brothers and sisters, though it is usually applied to animal species or even larger groups. Some ideas are out of date in a sense. For example all vertebrates had some sort of fish for an ancestor so in a sense they all belong to the clade of fishes. You cannot have a clade of fishes that does not include tetrapods.

It is very hard to get rid of old out of date naming systems. That is why sometimes it is hard to define what is and what is not a fish properly.

Since: Mar 11

St. Croix valley

#57 Dec 5, 2013
MikeF wrote:
<quoted text>
You'll have to check with John Cleese on that.
the troupe is getting back together!
muffy

Glasgow, UK

#58 Dec 5, 2013
Subduction Zone wrote:
A lot of groups of animals were named and categorized before we understood evolution. Now we can be a bit more scientific about it.
One thing you might study up on is the concept of Clades. A clade is a group with a common ancestor. It might be a group as small as you and your brothers and sisters, though it is usually applied to animal species or even larger groups. Some ideas are out of date in a sense. For example all vertebrates had some sort of fish for an ancestor so in a sense they all belong to the clade of fishes. You cannot have a clade of fishes that does not include tetrapods.
It is very hard to get rid of old out of date naming systems. That is why sometimes it is hard to define what is and what is not a fish properly.
Thanks, that's a new word for me. This feels like a much more sensible way of grouping animals.

“Pissing people off since 1949”

Level 8

Since: Apr 08

Seffner, FL

#59 Dec 5, 2013
woodtick57 wrote:
<quoted text>the troupe is getting back together!
I saw that. Way cool!

Level 9

Since: Sep 08

Everett, WA

#60 Dec 5, 2013
muffy wrote:
<quoted text>
Thanks, that's a new word for me. This feels like a much more sensible way of grouping animals.
I forgot this link:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clade

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