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Discussion » Questions » Food and Drink » Why do people say "tuna fish", but never "beef mammal" or "chicken bird"?

Why do people say "tuna fish", but never "beef mammal" or "chicken bird"?

Posted - October 31, 2020

Responses


  • 26704
    Habit from names of other fish. ie. Catfish, crawfish, swordfish, lionfish, etc

    There are beef cows and milk/dairy cows. 
    There are blue birds, red birds. 
    There are black widow spiders, beetle bugs, junebugs, lightning bugs. 

    Personally, I say Tuna. 
      October 31, 2020 5:53 AM MDT
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  • 36971
    Beef cattle.
      October 31, 2020 10:28 AM MDT
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  • 26704
    But if you are referring to just one animal it would be "beef cow."
      October 31, 2020 10:42 AM MDT
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  • 36971
    Or beef steer.
      October 31, 2020 10:45 AM MDT
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  • 26704
    Only if it is neutered male.   Females are heifers (have not given birth) or cows (have given birth).

    So it is either a beef bull, beef steer, beef cow or a beef heifer.   This post was edited by my2cents at October 31, 2020 11:14 AM MDT
      October 31, 2020 11:06 AM MDT
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  • 12545
    Lots of fish without it in the name, eg mullet, snapper, bream, perch, salmon.
      October 31, 2020 7:02 PM MDT
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  • 26704
    True but many that do. 
      October 31, 2020 8:27 PM MDT
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  • 4161
    All I know is you can tune a piano, but you can't tuna fish. 
      October 31, 2020 1:19 PM MDT
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  • 14736
    I don't know anyone who says tuna fish.  I actually only buy albacore but still say tuna salad.   
      October 31, 2020 10:50 PM MDT
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  • 6420
    What about a "pork butt?"
      November 1, 2020 8:39 AM MST
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  • 448
    Because in standard British and Australian English, "tuna" sounds too much like "tuner". Without the "fish" part, someone who only heard part of the conversation might assume you were a cannibal and were eating the piano tuner for lunch.
      December 11, 2020 12:29 PM MST
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  • 36971
      December 11, 2020 12:35 PM MST
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