#1
So, this is something a friend and I were discussing today, and we couldn't figure it out.

Fish obviously need oxygen to survive, and they get this through their gills. Common knowledge. But, do they actively pull water through their gills, or is it just from swimming around that water passes through them and oxygen is absorbed?

Then, to take the question further, you would think that out of the water they would be able to get oxygen even more easily, and yet they drown. My friend is of the opinion that they become overloaded with oxygen and their bodies can't handle it, but I lean more towards that they aren't designed to get stuff from the air.


What do you think?
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#3
They get the oxygen molecules trapped between the water molecules. In air, there is no water molecules with oxygen trapped in them. Their gills are designed to get it when trapped in water molecules. So when they're above water, they can't get any oxygen out.

#4
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#5
Fish need to have water move through their gills to get oxygen. The easiest way to do this is by swimming, which causes water to move past the gills. If not in motion, many have muscles that push water past their gills. This same motion cannot be accomplished through the oxygen in air. It doesn't follow the same principles.


/shark week knowledge
#6
Does anyone watch Shark Men? It's some pretty interesting 'shiz'.

I figured going off topic would be okay since the question has basically been answered.
#7
It has to do with diffusion. The gills are permeable membranes, and oxygen is allowed to enter the fishes' lungs. It's a lot more complicated than that, but I'm not about about to type it all out.

It's called counter concurrent exchange.... go look it up, it's easier than asking on a forum.
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#8
Quote by AeroRocker
Fish need to have water move through their gills to get oxygen. The easiest way to do this is by swimming, which causes water to move past the gills. If not in motion, many have muscles that push water past their gills. This same motion cannot be accomplished through the oxygen in air. It doesn't follow the same principles.


/shark week knowledge


Some sharks need to move to breathe, but I think most fish, like, flap their gills to breathe when they're motionless.
#9
People often make the mistake of thinking that they breathe through their gills. They actually breathe through their gold grills.
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#10
Most (if not all) sharks must keep swimming constantly to keep water flowing over their gills, but fish do not.