fish rigging and animating on a path?

I am trying to animate a fish swimming on path and after much messing around… I decided to look for some guidance.

First, I thought I would animate the body of the fish swimming in place (body swaying & tail flapping), then apply that looping animation to a path. What would be the best way I could set up the fish for this kind of animation? I have tried joints and soft binding and blend shapes, but this is a new area for me so I’m not sure what is the right way to go.

Also, once I have the still fish animated can I duplicate many fish then apply them to their own separate motion paths (with flow path)??

Any help or direction anyone can give me would be great… Thanks!

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