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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
Shellfish shippers are certified and each package of shellfish should bear the certificate number of the shipper.
▪ Fish and shellfish or dairy foods could show up daily, but would be optional.
▪ He studies phytoplankton toxins that are eaten by shellfish, which then become potent vectors of these toxins paralytic to humans.
▪ Specialities are fresh fish and shellfish.
▪ Tests on 16 fossilised shellfish showed that acid dating is as accurate as carbon dating.
▪ The most expensive item consisted of several kinds of shellfish in a sauce and sounded as if it was better avoided.
▪ Tightly wrap or store in covered containers all cooked meat, poultry, and fish and shellfish and refrigerate them promptly.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Shellfish \Shell"fish`\, n. (Zo["o]l.) Any aquatic animal whose external covering consists of a shell, either testaceous, as in oysters, clams, and other mollusks, or crustaceous, as in lobsters and crabs.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

also shell-fish, Old English scylfiscas (plural); see shell (n.) + fish (n.).


n. An aquatic invertebrate, such as a mollusc or crustacean, that has a shell, especially as food.

  1. n. meat of edible aquatic invertebrate with a shell (especially a mollusk or crustacean)

  2. invertebrate having a soft unsegmented body usually enclosed in a shell [syn: mollusk, mollusc]

  3. [also: shellfishes (pl)]


Shellfish is a culinary and fisheries term for exoskeleton-bearing aquatic invertebrates used as food, including various species of molluscs, crustaceans, and echinoderms. Although most kinds of shellfish are harvested from saltwater environments, some kinds are found in freshwater. In addition, a few species of land crabs are eaten, for example Cardisoma guanhumi in the Caribbean.

Despite the name, shellfish are not a kind of fish, but are simply water-dwelling animals. Many varieties of shellfish ( crustaceans in particular) are actually closely related to insects and arachnids, making up one of the main classes of the phylum Arthropoda. Cephalopods (squids, octopi, cuttlefish) and bivalves (clams, oysters) are molluscs, as are snails and slugs.

Familiar marine molluscs used as a food source by humans include many species of clams, mussels, oysters, winkles, and scallops. Some crustaceans commonly eaten are shrimp, lobsters, crayfish, and crabs. Echinoderms are not as frequently harvested for food as molluscs and crustaceans; however, sea urchin roe is quite popular in many parts of the world.

Most shellfish eat a diet composed primarily of phytoplankton and zooplankton.

Shellfish are among the most common food allergens.

Usage examples of "shellfish".

Martian shellfish, but the ancestral Hets enslaved the Hands and used the iron filaments as general manipulators.

It was arranged in the Neapolitan style, and consisted of an enormous dish of macaroni and ten or twelve different kinds of shellfish which are plentiful on the Neapolitan coasts.

There were market boats moored along the levee of the river, come to bring fish and shellfish, venison, rabbits, squirrel, raccoons, opossums, and robins, black birds, pigeons, and the small plovers called papabottes, known for their aphrodisiac qualities among Creole gentlemen, plus vegetables tied in bundles or heaped in baskets, and exotic fruits from the West Indies.

He ate his last shellfish, then picked up a sweetroot to fill the gaps in his belly.

Its skin was dappled with small shellfish and crusted with strange cancerlike growths.

Shellfish and crustaceans were to be gathered on the rocky shores when the weather was calm, and fish abounded in the sea.

Emily wanted to stop for mussels and winkles at the shellfish stand, then for lemonade at a nearby cafe, claiming she was hungry and thirsty, and in a burst of willfulness she stamped her foot.

Wicklow lamb, Irish salmon, loads of lobster, mussels, we could have a centrepiece of Irish shellfish.

Cathy worked out that they should have two paellas, one with shellfish and one less authentic one without.

It was a stiff climb and she had a carrying pole, with a bunch of plantains at one end and a basket of shellfish on the other.

There are comb jellies and moon jellies in many flavors, seahorses that crunch when you bite into them, and shellfish that have to be sucked out of their homes and down your throat.

They ascertained, however, that eatable shellfish abounded there, but these could not be of any great advantage to them until some easy means of communication had been established between the two banks of the Mercy, and until the means of transport had been perfected.

I recall that one of Belisarius' officers becomes short of breath and flushed if he eats shellfish.

There was food too—fruit, sweet confections, shellfish, and roast pork with honey, kept warm over braisers set up on the paving stones of the plaza, the odors thick in the air.

The weather was so balmy that we availed ourselves of overnight shelter in just two villages—Pijijia among the Mame and Tonala among the Mixe people—and then only for the luxuries of having a freshwater bath and of dining on the delicious local sea fare: raw turtle eggs and stewed turtle meat, boiled shrimps, raw or steamed shellfish of all sorts, even broiled fillets of something called the yeyemichi, which I was told is the biggest fish in the world, and which I can attest is one of the tastiest to eat.