1. The effectiveness of oxygen uptake by the blood of rainbow trout (Salmo gairdneri) approaches 100%, whereas that for the removal of oxygen from water was only 11-30%.
2. Most of the carbon dioxide is removed from the blood as it passes through the gills, but the effectiveness of carbon dioxide uptake by water is very low, because of the high capacity of water for carbon dioxide compared with oxygen.
3. Moderate exercise had little effect on the effectiveness of gas exchange across the gills. The increased oxygen uptake was facilitated by an increase in the transfer factor of the gills for oxygen. There were small increases in the capacity-rate ratio of blood to water at the gills during moderate exercise.
4. Hypoxia resulted in a marked decrease in the effectiveness of oxygen uptake by the blood, but had little effect on oxygen removal from the water. Gas exchange was facilitated during hypoxia by an increase in transfer factor of the gills, but hindered by an increasing capacity-rate ratio of blood to water at the gills.
5. Gas exchange in an aquatic environment was compared with that in an aerial environment.