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n. pl. killifish or kil·li·fish·es
Any of numerous small fishes of the family Fundulidae and related families of the order Cyprinidontiformes, chiefly inhabiting fresh and brackish waters in warm regions and popular in home aquariums.

[Perhaps kill + fish.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


n, pl -fish or -fishes
(Animals) any of various chiefly American minnow-like cyprinodont fishes of the genus Fundulus and related genera, of fresh and brackish waters: used as aquarium fishes, to control mosquitoes, and as anglers' bait
[C19: see kill2, fish]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(ˈkɪl iˌfɪʃ)

n., pl. (esp. collectively) -fish, (esp. for kinds or species) -fish•es.
1. any small freshwater fish of the family Cyprinodontidae, used as bait and for mosquito control.
2. Also called topminnow. any of several small North American freshwater killifishes, used as bait and for mosquito control.
3. any of several livebearers.
[1805–15, Amer.; killi- (perhaps kill2 + -y2 + fish]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.killifish - small mostly marine warm-water carp-like schooling fisheskillifish - small mostly marine warm-water carp-like schooling fishes; used as bait or aquarium fishes or in mosquito control
cyprinodont - any member of the family Cyprinodontidae
Fundulus heteroclitus, mummichog - silver-and-black killifish of saltwater marshes along the Atlantic coast of the United States
Fundulus majalis, may fish, mayfish, striped killifish - black-barred fish of bays and coastal marshes of the Atlantic and Gulf Coast of the United States
rivulus - found in small streams of tropical America; often kept in aquariums; usually hermaphroditic
American flagfish, flagfish, Jordanella floridae - a fish with a dark-blue back and whitish sides with red stripes; found in swamps and streams of Florida
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
GOOD JORD Jones laps up applause after grabbing Killies second goal.
Left-back Taylor moved to Killie in 2014 after being told by Rangers he was too small and slight.
McIntyre looked to have turned the game Killies' way with an inspired second half performance, but Dunfermline hit back to spoil the plan.
McIntyre was again involved in Killies' second goal when he was hauled down in the box by French.