Which Fish Live in Any Water

Which Fish Live in Any Water?

Fishes that are capable of living in both fresh water and saline water conditions are salmon, red drum, striped bass, and flounder along with eels.

When there are hundreds and thousands of fish species that live in different aquatic environments, typically you can categorize these fishes in two aquatic environments particularly freshwater and saltwater. The main difference between these aquatic environments is the concentration of salts and minerals. You must be thinking about why these salts are important for fish survival and how they maintain the regulation of these salts in their body.

Hence these are pretty important questions that need to be addressed accordingly, but we will discuss them in detail in the upcoming sections of this article.  Definitely, there are numerous fishes that can tolerate fresh water as well as saline water environment for their survival.  Salmon, red drum, striped bass, and flounder along with eels are the fish that can survive in these environments very appropriately.

Sometimes the tolerance that is achieved is due to billions of years of evolution. While some fishes are adapted to survive in every kind of aquatic environment from the initial level. In this article, we will discuss a lot of important information with you. So stay with us till the last line.

How are Water Conditions Important for Fish Survival?

Water conditions are important, and it is necessary to be maintained for the proper survival of fish. That is the reason why we have considered a lot about the concentration of salts in water. You have seen that there are fishes that only survive in saline water however some are habitual or adapted to live in freshwater only. The main phenomenon that helps in the survival of fish is the regulation of salts within the body of fish.

 Fishes that are living in freshwater, have a very little amount of salts outside their bodies, so they excrete and regulate their body accordingly; however, fishes living in saline water have higher concentrations of salts outside their body environment. 

So they consume water to keep their cells hydrated. So both these fishes adapt to different phenomena for their survival. And that is the reason that many fishes which used to live in saline water cannot survive in freshwater and vice versa. 

 Following is the detail of some fishes that live both in freshwater as well as saline water. Some species have the adaptation that they spend some of their life in fresh water and their next life is in saline water. The ability to escape into another environment is sometimes seasonal or periodic in nature. However, this adaptation has taken billions of years. 

Now you are familiar with which fish live in any water. Salmon, red drum, striped bass, and flounder along with eels are very efficient in surviving both types of water conditions. Now it’s time to look into detail how they survive in both aquatic habitats.


Salmon has successfully adapted itself to retain in both aquatic habitats saline water and freshwater. It has the capacity to osmoregulate its body according to the sea water mode as well as the freshwater mode. According to some researchers, it has been concluded that a substantial population of salmon has this capacity.  

Which Fish Live in Any Water

Salmon spend a short time of their life in freshwater however they migrate to seawater after some time. In this scenario, different salmon species act accordingly.  For example, pink salmon migrate to saline water just after their emergence from the gravel stage as free-swimming juveniles.  

However, other species of salmon, like Chinook salmon and coho salmon, spend most of their time in freshwater and then migrate downstream to another physiological environment.  During their one to two years of stay in fresh water they developed the capacity to osmoregulate their body in saline water.

Hence different salmon species have different developmental stages, and they osmoregulate their body according to the aquatic environment.  However, exposure to a particular aquatic environment, such as freshwater and saline water, is different in every species.  But we can say that at their initial life stage salmons live in freshwater and their adult life stage is in saline water.


Well, eels are in the category of fishes that can live in freshwater as well as seawater.  Different species spend their life cycle in different aquatic environments. For instance, the American eel lives in an extremely wide variety of habitats. The entire range is different because it spends most of its life cycle in freshwater, particularly in lakes and rivers.  However, some time is also in saline water or brackish water.

Which Fish Live in Any Water

 Its migration is according to seasonal variations.  During the winter season, eels in seawater or brackish water tend to find shelter in the mud or in freshwater. Or alternatively, we can say that in winter they move to freshwater habitats. 

However, it has also been seen that there are some eel species that spend their life cycle hundreds of meters in the depth of seawater during the winter season. So it entirely depends on the species which you are considering for its survival in freshwater and saline water.

Flounder fish

Flounder fish is also in this category and can survive in freshwater and slime water. But there are also some exceptions regarding some species of this fish. Generally, many flounder species can survive in saltwater; however, they have some capacity to live in freshwater as well.  But the Black founder is very popular because it can spend its life in freshwater. 

Overall this fish native in the coastal waters of the Pacific Ocean as well as the Atlantic Ocean.  Flounder fish can tolerate a huge range of environmental conditions. In addition to different salinities, it is capable of surviving in different water temperatures as well. So if you are planning to keep it in your fish tank or start your fish farming, then it is a strong candidate for you.

The Final Statement

Hence we can conclude that there are numerous fish species that have the capacity to live both in seawater as well as freshwater, including lakes, rivers, and ponds. This adaptation is only in a few species of the fish family. Salmon, eels, flounder, and red drum fish are on the list.  These have great retention capacities to live in a wide range of aquatic environments.

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