Hidden discoveries: Extinct animals & creole-pidgin ethnozoology (Part 4)

chum salmon

< lekai salmon > (image credit: WDFW)

One last term that we hadn’t known is one that we thought only referred to the introduced species Equus ferus caballus (the horse).

Page 341 of the 1850s railroad survey that we’ve been discussing informs us that Salmo canis / dog salmon — also commonly ‘chum salmon’, from Chinuk Wawa t’sə́m sámən ‘spotted/marked fish’ — is also known by a synonym, “spotted or lekai salmon“!

That’s Jargon likʰay ‘spotted, speckled’, previously known only in reference to horses.  

Yet another new ethnozoology discovery in Chinuk Wawa…

What have you learned?