• Ventral aspect of crayfish
    Ventral aspect of crayfish
  • WordNet 3.6
    • n crayfish large edible marine crustacean having a spiny carapace but lacking the large pincers of true lobsters
    • n crayfish small freshwater decapod crustacean that resembles a lobster
    • n crayfish tiny lobster-like crustaceans usually boiled briefly
    • n crayfish warm-water lobsters without claws; those from Australia and South Africa usually marketed as frozen tails; caught also in Florida and California
    • ***

Additional illustrations & photos:

Diagrammatic median longitudinal section of crayfish Diagrammatic median longitudinal section of crayfish

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: Humans have 46 chromosomes, peas have 14 and crayfish have 200.
    • Crayfish a large edible marine crustacean having a spiny carapace but lacking the large pincers of true lobsters.
    • n Crayfish (Zoöl) Any decapod crustacean of the family Astacidægenera Cambarus and Cambarus), resembling the lobster, but smaller, and found in fresh waters. Crawfishes are esteemed very delicate food both in Europe and America. The North American species are numerous and mostly belong to the genus Cambarus. The blind crawfish of the Mammoth Cave is Cambarus pellucidus. The common European species is Astacus fluviatilis.
    • n Crayfish krā"fĭsh (Zoöl) See Crawfish.
    • Crayfish tiny lobsterlike crustaceans usually boiled briefly.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n crayfish See crawfish.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Crayfish krā′fish a large fresh-water crustacean in the long-tailed division of the order Decapoda: the small spiny lobster.
    • ***


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
Corrupted fr. OE. crevis, creves, OF. crevice, F. écrevisse, fr. OHG. krebiz, crab, G. krebs,. See Crab. The ending -fish, arose from confusion with E. fish,
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
M. E. crevice—O. Fr. crevice (Fr. écrevisse, a crayfish)—Old High Ger. krebiz, a Crab.


In literature:

They are what are known as compound eyes, a type common to the crayfish and lobster families.
"The Dawn of Reason" by James Weir
How did Warner know that the man had been out crayfishing when not a word had been said about it?
"Edward Barry" by Louis Becke
At this time these little crayfish are very tiny indeed; but to get an idea of what they look like, and how they hold on, look at fig.
"Chatterbox, 1906" by Various
Turning over a stone with my foot, a crayfish darted off and tried to hide.
""Martin Of Nitendi"; and The River Of Dreams" by Louis Becke
As we were arranging our bivouac next night, l'Encuerado saw a crayfish, and set off with Lucien to try and catch some of them.
"Adventures of a Young Naturalist" by Lucien Biart
There was one large perch in it and a crayfish angrily stretched out his claws.
"The House with the Mezzanine and Other Stories" by Anton Tchekoff
Another amusement is hunting for crayfish on the reef at low tide.
"Two Years with the Natives in the Western Pacific" by Felix Speiser
I was always afraid of these huge crayfish, but C. was not.
"Tales of Fishes" by Zane Grey
We like nuts, too, and little crayfish which we find on the edges of ponds.
"Birds Illustrated by Color Photography [December, 1897], Vol 2. No 6." by Various
He took advantage of the receding tide to wander among the rocks in search of crayfish.
"Toilers of the Sea" by Victor Hugo
In South America crayfishes are found in southern Brazil, Argentina and Chile.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 7, Slice 6" by Various
One of these latter, a species of small crayfish, inhabits the waters of a little stream which traverses the Ossuaire.
"Paris" by William Walton
The fishing did not take five minutes for the crayfish were swarming in the creek.
"Abandoned" by Jules Verne
The name is given, in cookery, to a thick soup, made particularly of crayfish or lobsters.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 4, Slice 1" by Various
Broiled mushrooms, stewed mushrooms and onions, and crayfish soup?
"Unexplored!" by Allen Chaffee
Likewise did I fish in the Lippe, and was so lucky at that, that it seemed as if I could conjure both fish and crayfish out of the water.
"The Adventurous Simplicissimus being the description of the Life of a Strange vagabond named Melchior Sternfels von Fuchshaim" by Hans Jacob Christoph von Grimmelshausen
Representatives are: Crabs, lobsters, shrimps, crayfish, water-fleas, and woodlice.
"Handbook of Medical Entomology" by William Albert Riley
Small crayfishes are desirable to show locomotion in water.
"A Guide for the Study of Animals" by Worrallo Whitney
The Crayfish Mother was too weak to move, and when the Wise Old Crayfish came along she spoke to him.
"Among the Pond People" by Clara Dillingham Pierson
In this moist region, numerous crayfish were to be found in summer.
"Toronto of Old" by Henry Scadding

In poetry:

Surface calm and calm act mask the detonating fear,
the moving crayfish claw, the stare
of sunfish hovering above the cloud-stained sand,
a sucker nudging cans, the grinning maskinonge.
"Underwater Autumn" by Richard F Hugo

In news:

Mike Roberson saw this juvenile Yellow-crowned Night-Heron catch a crayfish at a park in Houston, Texas.
Crayfishing is a delicious outdoor sport .
Crayfish, with their menacing tentacles and angry clamp, may be the least attractive thing a fisherman would find in the crystal blue water of Lake Tahoe.
Louisiana crawfish often are used around the country because many local " crayfish " have a higher mortality rate.
Crayfish will soon be commercially harvested from Lake Tahoe.
But in other parts of our great country they are called crayfish , crawfish , mudbugs or yabbies.
Crayfish crook stealing traps at Lake Tahoe.
INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev.—A crayfish crook is on the prowl at Lake Tahoe.
Fred Jackson founded his new enterprise earlier this year, acquired a permit and started harvesting the crayfish in July.
Crayfish to eat - if they're not stolen.
A crayfish crook is on the prowl at Lake Tahoe.
INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. A crayfish crook is on the prowl at Lake Tahoe.
Crayfishers feel pinch of China easing .
The squeeze on discretionary spending in China is affecting crayfish export prices.
A fisherman drives a boat and grabs crayfish traps in a rice field in Gueydan, La.