Re: NANFA-- native fish trivia question

Bruce Stallsmith (
Fri, 14 Apr 2000 11:23:52 EDT

This is why I invoked the spectre of lawyers here; "minnow" is a germanized
Latin vulgate word, derived from the word "minimus", small. The various
"Topminnows" of the genus Fundulus (which contrarily is derived from a Latin
word meaning "in association with the deep") are not part of the Cyprinidae.
This is the rub with common names, of course; you say "minnow" to me and
I'll think of anything small in the water except for catfish, but that's
just the dialect I grew up with. Like the sainted Lenny Bruce, I'm damaged
by language. (Should we go back to writing in Latin for science? Maybe I'm a
conservative after all...)

--Bruce Stallsmith, ethnic barbarian
Huntsville, AL

> >The phrasing of the question is slippery, Chris, but I'll hazard a guess
> >_Rivulus marmoratus_ would answer the description here; you can find it
> >coastal Florida, and also in various cays around the Caribbean where you
> >certainly don't find "North American minnows". (Luckily for us the
> >are still tied up with the Microsoft case.)
>Cap'n Bruce,
>Not sure what you're gettin' at here. Last time I looked Rivulus marmoratus
>not a minnow (i.e., member of Cyprinidae).

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