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The Gemara (Niddah 51b) says that there will never exist a fish with scales and no fins. Then comes in the Monopterus Cuchia, a fish which has scales, yet does not possess any fins.

Does anyone have an answer to this? I have been doing some research but did not come up with anything.

Please note that a "fin" in halacha is classified as what the fish uses to swim with, as stated in Chullin 3:7. The Monopterus Cuchia does not, as far as I know, have such fins.

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    Maybe it's not a fish? I.e., that the halachic classification of a "fish" is one that either has fins and scales, or only fins. If it doesn't have fins, it's not halachically a fish?
    – Harel13
    Commented Dec 26, 2021 at 15:30
  • there seems to be discussion online about the daatemet.org.il/en/question/… daatemet.org.il/en/question/your-words-about-fish torchweb.org/torah_detail.php?id=117
    – rosends
    Commented Dec 26, 2021 at 15:33
  • @Harel13, Technically that would be a good answer. Do you know of a source of the classification of a fish? Perhaps it is written somewhere. Thanks for the response! Commented Dec 26, 2021 at 15:34
  • @rosends Yes I am aware of Daat Emet's arguments I just want to see if they are correct or not, for there is plenty of proof that Oral Torah is divine and therefore was written with divine wisdom. Surely the Chachamim were not wrong about this case either. Commented Dec 26, 2021 at 15:35
  • @Torahlover613 the third link I provided makes a related statement at the end. I was simply filling a gap, as your question indicated that you had not come up with anything in your research.
    – rosends
    Commented Dec 26, 2021 at 15:38

1 Answer 1

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I have found an answer to my question! Because the Monopterus-Cuchia has scales that are not visible, it does not classify as having scales in halacha.

For sources, I quote from the oukosher.org site the following: " Both the Aruch HaShulchan and the Tiferes Yisroel mention that the kaskeses must be perceivable by the naked eye from a normal distance in order to be halachicly significant."

I am not sure the exact place they got this from but I also think that it won't be too hard to contact them (or find it ourselves) and get the precise source. But I think for now we can rely on this.

Then for the proof that the Monopterus-Cuchia does not have halachic scales, I refer to fisheriesjournal.org: "Monopterus-Cuchia is a freshwater fish species commonly known as mud eel, swamp eel, cuche or cuchia. It is looks like snake and smooth slimy scale less skin"

For the specific links, see here: (1: https://oukosher.org/blog/consumer-kosher/an-analysis-of-kaskeses-past-and-present-2/) (2:https://www.fisheriesjournal.com/archives/2019/vol7issue6/PartA/7-5-73-913.pdf )

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  • I want all of the sources.
    – Double AA
    Commented Dec 26, 2021 at 20:30
  • @DoubleAA Sure! Commented Dec 26, 2021 at 20:37
  • @DoubleAA I quote from the oukosher.org site the following: " Both the Aruch HaShulchan and the Tiferes Yisroel mention that the kaskeses must be perceivable by the naked eye from a normal distance in order to be halachicly significant." I am not sure the exact place they got this from but I also think that it won't be too hard to contact them and get the precise source. But I think for now we can rely on this. Commented Dec 26, 2021 at 20:38
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    It's great that you found an answer. You should edit the sources into the answer.
    – Harel13
    Commented Dec 26, 2021 at 20:43
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    The distinction between the type of scales in eels and fish is apparently that eel scales do not detach like fish scales do. It’s also worth noting that although adult eels do not have fins. The larvae & small juveniles do. See: pfeil-verlag.de/publikationen/… Commented Dec 26, 2021 at 22:45

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