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Forum LockedAnimal names in different languages

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    Posted: 26-May-2009 at 16:35

It´s really fortunate that Carl von Linné invented the binominal nomenclature for living organisms, it really makes it more easy to know what animal or plant one is talking about. But still one can see a lot of confusion in translating different names. One funny example is from a wild West movie which had Swedish subtexts. In one scen there was a man and a woman standing close to a little pond in the desert. Suddenly one could hear a splash from the water. “Vad var det (What was that)?” exlaimed the woman, “Det var en havskatt (That was a ...)”  the man answered. In Swedish “havskatt” is the Seawolf or Wolffish (Anarhichas lupus), a maritime species that you certainly don´t find in small ponds in the desert. What was really said in the movie was “catfish” a fish from the big groups of fishes called siluriformes (catfishes), mostly freshwater species distributed all over the world.

Another example of misunderstanding is that the British name for the Moose (Alces alces) is Elk, but Elk in American english mostly means the Wapiti deer (Cervus canadensis).

 
Maybe you know more of these misunderstandings concerning animal (or plant) names? It should be interesting to read about them.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Terri Ann Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26-May-2009 at 17:06
Bison and Buffalo.
I always think that's one and the same animal.
Are they the same ............?Ermm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carcharodon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26-May-2009 at 18:02
Bison is a genus with two still living species, it´s the American Buffalo (Bison bison) and the European Wisent (Bison bonasus). The word Buffalo came originally from the word Boeuf (cattle or ox) since the first French explorers thought that the animals they saw reminded them of cattle.

Edited by Carcharodon - 31-May-2009 at 13:19
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carcharodon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26-May-2009 at 18:08
By the way in the example with the catfish, I maybe didn´t make clear that the Swedish word "havskatt" literary means "sea cat". The translator thought the English Catfish was the same as havskatt. But in English the fish is called Seawolf or Wolffish. The Catfish is called "mal" in Swedish.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-May-2009 at 10:45
There's a fish called "Sea wolf" in English? I looked it up and apparently there is supposed to be, but in my experience you'll never hear anyone calling it that. Anarhichas lupus in England is called catfish, though it's no relation to the fish known in the US as catfish, which goes so well with hush puppies. It's also known I think as 'sea perch'.
 
But I've spent a lifetime trying to disentangle the cnfusion between fish names in differentn countries, at least of the edible varieties.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carcharodon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-May-2009 at 11:28
As many fishes Anarhichas lupus has a lot of names: Atlantic wolffish, Seawolf, Atlantic catfish, Wolf eel, or Sea cat. In french it is called Loupe Atlantique (atlantic wolf).
But still the translator of the movie could have understood that "havskatt" (the Swedish word "hav" means sea) would not live in a small pond in an American desert, a long way from the sea. The Swedish term for the catfishes (Siluriformes) is "malar", sing: "mal".
 
 
 
But these sort of misunderstandings are very common when concerns names of fishes. As for example in Sweden we have the word "stenbit" and that name can refer to the male of the Lumpsucker (Cyclopterus lumpus) or it can refer to the Brown trout (Salmo trutta fario), depending on where in Sweden you live. Funnily enough the roe of the Lumpsucker is called "stenbitsrom" (rom = roe) even if it is the male which is called stenbit. The female is called "kvabbso".
So hats off to Linné, he made it possible for people from different regions and different countries to know that they are talking about the same organism.
 
By the way, Anarhichas lupus is also known in the fishmarkets as "kotlettfisk" (chop fish)when it is sold without it´s skin and head. So is also the Anglerfish ((Lophius piscatorius).
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Terri Ann Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-May-2009 at 11:36
Must be something about fish .........
 
Dogfish - also known as cat shark (!), tope, huss, and (for some unknown reason) "rock salmon" when served with chips - and that's just the English names.  No doubt every other country has another complete set of names.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-May-2009 at 20:37
I've often eaten what in German is called 'barsch' but only a couple of weeks ago did I find what it is called in English.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carcharodon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-May-2009 at 23:16
Probably Perch (in Swedish abborre) (Perca fluviatilis). Often also called Flussbarsch.
 
 
 
Was it this one?
 
 


Edited by Carcharodon - 27-May-2009 at 23:17
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28-May-2009 at 05:34
Some animals in my country:
 
English - Spanish - Mapudungun (Mapuche language)
 
Lion - León - Pangue
Condor - Condor - Manque
Dog - Perro - Trewa
Cat - Gato - Ñauke
Falcon - Halcón - Traru
Ostrich - Avestruz - Choike               (The South American Ostrich is usually called Ñandu)
Serpent - Culebra - Vilu
Chicken - Gallina - Achawal
Horse - Caballo - Caweyu (hispanic origin)
Sheep - Oveja - Oficha (hispanic origin)


Edited by pinguin - 28-May-2009 at 05:35
"He who attempts to count the stars, not even knowing how to count the knots of the 'quipus'(counting string), ought to be held in derision."

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28-May-2009 at 14:55
Originally posted by Carcharodon Carcharodon wrote:

Probably Perch (in Swedish abborre) (Perca fluviatilis). Often also called Flussbarsch.
 
 
 
Was it this one?
  
 
No. It's one that comes in a cardboard box in a deep freeze. Smile
 
Actually, yes, I think that was indeed it. Of course I've also eaten perch or perche often enough but only bought as fillets off the fishmonger's slab. I seem to remember buying a whole perch at some time (I do like cooking whole fish) but gave up on it as too bony.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Jams Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28-May-2009 at 15:01
The Ñandu is called Rhea in English - which is also the name of the genus.
 
Originally posted by Terri Ann Terri Ann wrote:

Must be something about fish .........
 
Dogfish - also known as cat shark (!), tope, huss, and (for some unknown reason) "rock salmon" when served with chips - and that's just the English names.  No doubt every other country has another complete set of names.
Actually, if we're technical about it, those fish are not the same, although the Dogfish term may be used colloquially about all small sharks.
 
The tope is a specific shark species, a grey species that does resemble a smooth dogfish somewhat, but it's not the same. Different dogfish aren't even specifically related, such as the smooth dogfish and the spiny dogfish. In fact, the smooth dogfish is more closely related to the tope, and even the blue shark, than it is to the spiny dogfish!
 
Maybe that's not too important, but I guarantee that Tope tastes real bad, while spiny dogfish tastes good!
 
It is also strange that the catsharks are also called dogfish, because they look nothing like the other dogfish.
 
So, it's not just the case of a shark with many names, but also a case of different sharks that have the same general name.
 
"Spiny dogfish" the only one that tastes good.
"Smooth dogfish" - completely unrelated to the spiny dogfish. It is the "original" dogfish, Mustelus canis!
"Catshark" - a very, very different looking shark. This animal can hardly be confused with the other sharks, and it is completely unrelated. I don't know why some people call them dog fish?
This one is called the "greater spotted dogfish" by some, bull huss by others, despite that it really is a catshark.
Rather confusing, huh?
Fortunately, in other languages there is no such confusion.
In Danish
Lesser spotted catshark=småplettet rødhaj
Greater spotted dogfish=storplettet rødhaj
Spiny dogfish=pighaj
Tope=gråhaj
Smoth dogfish=glathaj
 
I forgot the tope. It's just a much larger shark than the others, although small individuals are the most common.
 


Edited by Jams - 28-May-2009 at 15:51
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carcharodon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29-May-2009 at 22:57

In Swedish and Latin these are:

Lesser spotted catshark=småplettet rødhaj = småfläckig rödhaj = (Scyliorhinus canicula)
 
Greater spotted dogfish= Nursehound=storplettet rødhaj = storfläckig rödhaj = (Scyliorhinus stellaris)
 
Spiny dogfish=pighaj = pigghaj = (Squalus acanthias)
 
Tope=gråhaj = gråhaj = (Galeorhinus galeus)
 
Smoth dogfish=glathaj = glatthaj = ((Mustelus mustelus, in the Eastern Atlantic), hundhaj (Mustelus canis), in the Western Atlantic)
 
And these are just some of the names these fishes have....
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carcharodon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29-May-2009 at 23:06
Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

I seem to remember buying a whole perch at some time (I do like cooking whole fish) but gave up on it as too bony.
 
Yes it can be a bit bony but it´s actually very good to barbeque or roast over open fire:
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Jams Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30-May-2009 at 15:08
Originally posted by Carcharodon Carcharodon wrote:

In Swedish and Latin these are:

Lesser spotted catshark=småplettet rødhaj = småfläckig rödhaj = (Scyliorhinus canicula)
 
Greater spotted dogfish= Nursehound=storplettet rødhaj = storfläckig rödhaj = (Scyliorhinus stellaris)
 
Spiny dogfish=pighaj = pigghaj = (Squalus acanthias)
 
Tope=gråhaj = gråhaj = (Galeorhinus galeus)
 
Smoth dogfish=glathaj = glatthaj = ((Mustelus mustelus, in the Eastern Atlantic), hundhaj (Mustelus canis), in the Western Atlantic)
 
And these are just some of the names these fishes have....
 
In other words, they're called exactly the same in Swedish as they are in Danish, except translated! I suppose I should have written the latin names too, but I posted pictures, so to show how different they look.
 
Originally posted by Carcharodon Carcharodon wrote:

Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

I seem to remember buying a whole perch at some time (I do like cooking whole fish) but gave up on it as too bony.
 
Yes it can be a bit bony but it´s actually very good to barbeque or roast over open fire:
 
 
Yes, always roast them, never boil. They're also good if cooked on a frying pan. I don't think they're too bony, but they have extremely tough skin, so it's best to cook them with their skin on. When they're cooked, the skin peels off easily. Bigger fish are better, they're more meaty. I find 1-2 lbs are the best. I find them very tasty, much better than most other freshwater fish -  although zander/walley and tench are also good, imho. Of course, trouts are too. One thing though, it's easy to get cut on the gills, there is some kind of sharp edge, not to mention all the pointy spines.
 
Now that I've mentined them,
English/Danish/Latin
Perch/aborre/Perca fluviatilis  
Zander/sandart/Sander lucioperca
Tench/suder/Tinca tinca
Trouts can be several different species, but here it's the
Brown trout/ørred/Salmo trutta. (ps. sea form is also called sea trout, Danish: havørred)
Salmon/laks/Salmo salar.
The sea living form of salmon and brown trout look quite similar, they can be really difficult to tell apart! In fact, they're closer related than the salmon is to many other fish called salmon.


Edited by Jams - 30-May-2009 at 16:18
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carcharodon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30-May-2009 at 15:31
Originally posted by Jams Jams wrote:

In other words, they're called exactly the same in Swedish as they are in Danish, except translated!
 
The only difference is that you write ø and we write Ö   Smile
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Jams Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30-May-2009 at 16:20
I was thinking more of plettet/fläckig!!!Cool
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carcharodon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30-May-2009 at 16:22
Originally posted by Carcharodon Carcharodon wrote:

Bison is a genus with two still living species, it´s the American Buffalo (Bison bison) and the European Wisent (Bison Bonasus).
 
In the year 2006 a funny incident happened in a Swedish town. In the night a wisent from the local zoo ran away and walked down in the city. Early in the morning there came reports to the police and to the zoo that this 800 kg heavy animal was walking around in the streets. Some early people on their way to their jobs nearly couldn´t believe their eyes when seeing the animal. Soon enough police and staff from the zoo came and managed to tranquilize the animal and get it in a truck and return it to the zoo. But still today people talk about when they saw a big buffalo down town.
 
 Buffel. Foto: Jan-Åke Thorell
 
Here is the wisent that ran away (his name is Abilli).


Edited by Carcharodon - 30-May-2009 at 16:26
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Jams Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30-May-2009 at 23:51

In Danish, they are actually called bison!

Amerikansk bison & Europæisk bison
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carcharodon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31-May-2009 at 13:16
 
In Swedish the American bison is called ´bison´ or `buffel`. The Wisent is called`visent`.
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