What are Shellfish?
A: Shellfish is a colloquial and fisheries term for exoskeleton-bearing aquatic invertebrates used as food.
This includes various species of what?
A: Mollusks, crustaceans, and echinoderms.
Although most kinds of shellfish are harvested from
saltwater environments, some are found where?
A: In freshwater.
Shellfish are among the most common food what?
Despite the name, shellfish are not what?
Most shellfish are low on the food chain and eat a diet
composed primarily of what?
A: Phytoplankton and zooplankton.
Many varieties of shellfish are actually closely
related to what?
A: To insects and arachnids; crustaceans make up one of the main subphyla of the phylum Arthropoda.
Mollusks include what?
A: Cephalopods (squids, octopuses, cuttlefish) and bivalves (clams, oysters), as well as gastropods (aquatic species such as whelks and winkles; land species such as snails and slugs).
Mollusks used as a food source by humans include many
species of what?
A: Clams, mussels, oysters, winkles, and scallops.
Some crustaceans that are commonly eaten are what?
A: Shrimp, lobsters, crayfish, crabs, and barnacles.
Echinoderms are not as frequently harvested for food as
mollusks and crustaceans; however, sea urchin roe is what?
A: Quite popular in many parts of the world, where the live delicacy is harder to transport.
Though some shellfish harvesting has been
unsustainable, and shrimp farming has been destructive in some parts of the
world, shellfish farming can be important to what?
A: Environmental restoration, by developing reefs, filtering water and eating biomass.
In common parlance, as in "having shellfish for
dinner", shellfish can refer to what?
A: Anything from clams and oysters to lobster and shrimp.
For regulatory purposes it is often narrowly defined as
A: Filter-feeding mollusks such as clams, mussels, and oyster to the exclusion of crustaceans and all else.
Although their shells may differ, all shellfish are
Archaeological finds have shown that humans have been
making use of shellfish as a food item for how long?
A: Hundreds of thousands of years.
In the present, shellfish dishes are a feature of
almost all the cuisines of the world, providing an important source of what?
Lobster in particular is a great delicacy in the United
States, where families in the Northeast region make them into what?
A: The centerpiece of a clam bake, usually for special occasions.
Lobsters are eaten on much of the East Coast; the
American lobster ranges from Newfoundland down to where?
A: Down to about the Carolinas but is most often associated with Maine.
A typical meal involves boiling the lobster with some
slight seasoning and then serving it with what?
A: Drawn butter, baked potato, and corn on the cob.
Clamming is done both commercially and recreationally
A: The Northeast coastline of the US.
The soft-shelled clam is eaten how?
A: Either fried or steamed (and then called "steamers").
Many types of clams can be used for what?
A: Clam chowder.
Why is the quahog, a hard-shelled clam also known as a
chowder clam, often used?
A: Because the long cooking time softens its tougher meat.
The Chesapeake Bay and Maryland region has generally
been associated more with what?
A: Crabs, but in recent years the area has been trying to reduce its catch of blue crabs, as wild populations have been depleted.
In the Southeast, and particularly the gulf states what
is an important industry?
Where are copious amounts of shrimp harvested each
A: In the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean to satisfy a national demand for shrimp.
Locally, prawns and shrimp are often what?
A: Deep fried.
In the Cajun and Creole kitchens of
and prawns are a common addition to what?
A: Traditional recipes like jambalaya and certain stews.
Crawfish are a well-known and much eaten delicacy
there, often what?
A: Boiled in huge pots and heavily spiced.