Fish face a number of challenges in obtaining oxygen, due to the fact that water is very oxygen deficient compared to air. Freshwater contains 95 percent less oxygen than does air, and saltwater has, in general, only 20 percent of the oxygen content found in freshwater.
Carp and trout are examples of the two extremes of fish oxygen requirements. Trout have a small gill area and a high metabolism, so they only live in the ocean and in fast-moving streams where the oxygen levels are high. Carp, in contrast, have a small gill area and a slower metabolism, so they can withstand low levels of oxygen and live in small lakes and ponds.
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