Words to refer to edible water-dwelling creatures

Trying to make that into a pronounceable acronym – NOMPOBLIFTUALTOPTSTALM ? : perhaps the Maori of New Zealand could handle it; but otherwise, don’t see it catching on.

Wet et.

What if it stops coming, on harvest day?
Anyway…“Seaflesh”? “Seabeast”? “Seameat”?

There’s another thread right here on the first page where various posters have been mentioning their experiences eating whale meat.


Blue crabs swim pretty well. Stone crabs and king crabs not so much.

Clams, mussels, and oysters don’t swim however, at least after they’ve settled.

Spanish uses the word mariscos, which tends to mean shellfish but can include all seafood.

Interestingly, a live fish is a pez, but a fish on your plate is pescado (literally, “fished”).


Fruitti di mare.

Shellfish, to me at least, means bivalves, shrimp, lobsters, and crabs. I don’t think I’d generally include octopus and squid, though if someone proclaimed a shellfish allergy, I would disclose their presence instead of trying to hide behind a technicality.

I was going to say “fruits de mer.” The French Wikipedia notes that it excludes fish though.

“Aquanoms” ?

As mentioned before – the seemingly exclusionary emphasis on the sea (I don’t know Spanish, but take it that mariscos has “sea” {mar} connotations). I keep feeling – what about the poor neglected edible freshwater denizens? Unless it’s an understood thing that in culinary / gastronomic terms, “sea…” includes and embraces freshwater creatures as well…

Freshwater seafood, saltwater seafood.

Freshwater fish/molluscs, saltwater fish/molluscs.

Freshwater seafood is still seafood. No, it doesn’t make sense. Nor does it make sense that seaweed isn’t considered seafood. But that’s the way the language works.

There are no b,f,l,or s in the Maori alphabet,so they’ll be stumped too (and all syllables end in a vowel in Maori as well). I think pretty much anything edible from seas and rivers is included in the term kai moana (= ‘food from the sea’) in Maori anyway.

Sentient waterborne comestible

Ah, right – all the Maori I know is “kia-ora” (good health); and of the existence of that place with the astoundingly long name, beginning with T.

Just call it “dinner”

Sentient?! Are you harpooning the most dangerous game? (Aquaman?)

For me as an American, I would say the OP is correct that we lump all those under the general category “seafood,” regardless of whether it’s salt or freshwater creatures. (Besides, “sea” can be used in a more general sense.)