Words that are most often associated with animals in alphabetical order.

Abdomen
The third section of an insects body, behind the head and thorax.
Acanthodian
A group of fish that have jaws.
Adapted
Development of special features or behaviour in order to survive in a particular habitat. Well suited to a particular way of life.
Aestivation
An animal that becomes inactive in order to survive long periods of drought as in some reptiles and amphibians.
Agnathan
A group of fish that do not have jaws.
Ammonite
A type of cephalopod that has a long spiral shell.
Amphibian
Cold-blooded vertebrate animals that live in water as larvae and mostly on land as adults but return to the water to breed.
Amplexus
A form of pseudocopulation in which a male amphibian grasps a female with his front legs as part of the mating process. At the same time or with some time delay, he fertilizes the female eggs with fluid containing sperm.
Anal Claspers
Gripping projections located at the end of the body in caterpillars and male dragonflies.
Anaphylactic shock
Hypersensitivity allergic reaction in humans and other mammals particularly when stung by certain insects.
Anapsid
Reptiles that do not have holes on the sides of their skull.
Anatomy
The body structure of an animal including internal position of organs and bones and external features.
Ancestor
A related, earlier form of present animals.
Annelids
A major group of worms that have many body segments.
Antennae
A pair of structures on an insects head sensitive to touch, taste and smell.
Anti-venin
A counteractive medicine used against the effects of venom.
Antlers
Keratin horns that occur on members of the deer family.
Apex Predator
Predators that, as adults, are not normally preyed upon in the wild by other large animals in significant parts of their range. Apex predator species are often at the end of long food chains, where they have a crucial role in maintaining the health of ecosystems.
Aquatic
An animal that lives in either freshwater, brackish water or sea water.
Arachnid
An arthropod with eight legs such as a spider.
Archosaur
A group of diapsid reptiles that includes crocodiles.
Arthropod
An animal that has an exoskeleton.
Artiodactyl
A hoofed mammal with an even number of toes on each foot.
Autotomy
An animals capability of shedding a limb to escape the clutch of a predator.
Babook
Monkeys that have dog-like muzzles.
Backbone
A long support bone down the back of a vertebrate animal made from small vertebrae and also referred to as a spine.
Baleen
Long hanging parts from the inside upper jaw of a whales mouth that are used to filter food items from the water.
Barbs
Thin strands that make up most of a birds feather and held together by tiny hook-like structures called barbules.
Bask
Action performed by cold-blooded animals to warm up in the sun.
Beak
Two hardened mouthparts in which birds catch and carry their food. Alternative word for a birds bill.
Beast of Burden
An animal that is used to carry loads such as a camel.
Benthic
Used to describe an animal that lives on the bottom part of an ocean, lake or pond.
Bill
Alternative word for a birds beak.
Bird of Prey
A bird that hunts and kills other animals for food. They have hooked beaks, sharp talons and keen senses.
Bivalve
A shellfish that has two shell of roughly equal size.
Blubber
A thick layer of fat which is located just beneath the skin of cold-water aquatic animals.
Brachiation
The motion that monkeys swing through trees, swinging from branch to branch.
Brackish
Water that is part salty and part fresh found at the mouths of rivers and in coastal lagoons.
Breeding Season
A particular time of year when animals come together to mate. Most males and females only encounter during this period.
Brille
A fixed transparent scale that covers the eye of a snake or lizard.
Brood Parasite
A bird whose eggs are hatched and reared by another bird, such as in cuckoos.
Bovine
A member of the cattle family.
Bufagin
A toxic, foul tasting substance that toads and other amphibians secrete.
Bug
An insect with needle-like mouthparts for sucking food.
Camouflage
When an animals colour or pattern helps it to blend in with its natural surroundings.
Canid
A member of the dog family.
Cannibalistic
An animal that will eat its own species.
Carapace
A hard shell-like upper covering that protects the bodies of animals such as tortoises and turtles.
Carcass
The body and remains of a dead animal.
Carnivore
An animal that eats mostly meat.
Carrion
The carcass of a dead animal usually fed upon by scavengers.
Casque
A bony extension on the top of a birds beak or bill such as on a Cassowary bird.
Cathemeral
Active by day and by night.
Cell
A microscopic building block that all living things are made off. Also a hexagonal structure of a bee or wasp nest.
Cephalopod
A mollusc with one long shell.
Cephalothorax
Part of an arachnids body whereby the head and thorax are fused together.
Cerci
Sensory projections on the end of some insects abdomens.
Cetacean
Member of the whale family.
Chelicerae
The muscular jaws of an arachnid. A spiders chelicerae accommodate fangs.
Chelonion
The name given to the tortoise or turtle species.
Chemoreceptor
A sensory cell that detects waterborne or airborne scent particles.
Chrysalis
A hardened case which protects the pupa of an insect such as in butterflies.
Cilia
Tiny hairs that are used by animals such as to create a water current.
Cloaca
The posterior opening of an animal, such as a Newt, from which they excrete both urine and faeces.
Clutch
A group of eggs which has been laid by one female bird and which are incubated together.
Cnidarian
Main group of soft-bodied animals such as Jellyfish.
Cocoon
A case made from silk that protects insect pupa or spiders eggs.
Cold-blooded
An animal that cannot maintain its own body heat therefore having to absorb heat from its environment.
Colony
A group of insects that are offspring from one queen and live and work together in a nest.
Complete Metamorphosis
Development stages of an insect whereby the young differ in appearance to the adult form.
Conservation
The preservation and protection of a species of animal allowing them a better chance of surviving in the future.
Constrictor
A snake they kills its prey by wrapping itself around its victim and suffocating it.
Compound Eyes
Insect eyes that are made from many tiny lenses.
Crepuscular
A term used to describe some animals that are primarily active during twilight, that is at dawn and at dusk.
Crocodilian
The reptile family that includes crocodiles, alligators, caimans and gharials.
Crustaceans
Marine animals that have jointed limbs and a hard body covering such as crabs and lobsters.
Decapods
Meaning 'ten limbs' and includes crustaceans such as crabs, shrimp and prawn.
Detritivore
A scavenging animal that eats dead, dying or decaying animal matter.
Detritus
Dead plants or animals, material derived from animal tissues (such as skin cast off during moulting and excreta) gradually lose their form, due to both physical processes and the action of decomposers, including grazers, bacteria and fungi.
Diurnal
An animal that is active during the daytime and rests during the night.
Dorsal
Pertaining to the upper surface such as a dorsal fin on a fish.
Down
Soft, fluffy feathers that trap air to keep an animal warm such as in penguins.
Drone
A male bee who mates with the queen but does no work within the bee colony.
Echolocation
A method used by some animals to find their own position or to locate prey.
Ecosystem
An ecosystem is a natural unit consisting of all plants, animals and micro-organisms in an area functioning together with all of the non-living physical factors of the environment.
Ectothermic
An animal that cannot maintain a constant body temperature and relies on its environment for heat.
Eft
The land-dwelling stage in the life cycle of some amphibians between larvae and adult.
Egg-sac
A woven silk bag which is spun by a female spider to protect her eggs.
Egg-tooth
An infant spiders temporary tooth which is used to pierce the egg-sac upon hatching.
Elytra
The protective hardened case that covers an insects body (mainly wings).
Embryo
A development stage in the egg of a reptile before hatching.
Endangered
A species of animal that is in danger of dying out in the future unless steps are taken to preserve and protect it.
Endothermic
A warm-blooded animal that can maintain its own body temperature.
Equid
Member of the horse family.
Estrus
When female mammals are ready to mate.
Estuary
A habitat where the fresh water of a river meets the salty water of an ocean or sea.
Evolved
A gradual change over millions of years in animal species.
Exoskeleton
The covering of an arthropods body made of tough, protective and waterproof material.
Extinct
When a species of animal no longer exists.
Eye-spots
Distinct markings on an insects body or wings that imitate larger eyes than the insect has.
Fangs
Pointed, sometimes hollow mouthparts that are used to inject venom into prey as in snakes and spiders,
Felidae
The cat family.
Fledgling
A young bird that has developed its feathers.
Flightless
A bird that has feathers but is unable to fly such as an Ostrich and Emu.
Flight Feathers
Large feathers on a bird that make up the wings and provide power and lift when flying.
Flipper
The limb of a marine animal used for swimming.
Flanks
The section of flesh on the body of a person or an animal between the last rib and the hip - the side.
Flock
A group of birds flying together or a group of sheep in a field.
Forage
To search for food.
Formic Acid
A colourless, irritating substance squirted by ants in defence.
Fossil
Part of an animal that has been preserved in rock.
Gall
A growth that forms on a plant surrounding certain wasp eggs.
Gastropod
A mollusc with one shell.
Gestation
The period of time it takes an infant to develop inside its mother or egg.
Gill-rakers
Comb-like parts of gills that are used to filter food from the water.
Gland
A part of an animals body that produces hormones or venom.
Grubs
The larvae of insects particularly wasps, bees and beetles.
Habitat
A certain environment for an animal such as forest, ocean, cave or burrow.
Halteres
A knobbed structure on each side of a fly's body to help it control flight.
Heat Pit
A sensory organ on the head of some snakes that detects the heat given off by warm-blooded prey.
Herbivore
An animal that eats mostly plant and vegetation.
Herpetology
The study of amphibians and reptiles.
Hexapod
An arthropod that has six legs but is not an insect.
Hibernate
When an animal sleeps or becomes inactive to survive cold weather.
Hominids
Primates that include humans and their ancestors.
Honey Guides
Distinct lines on a plant or flower that guide bees and other insects to the nectar.
Honeydew
A sweet substance that comes out of the rear of a sap-feeding bug.
Host
An animal that is either lived on or in and fed upon by a harmful parasite.
Incomplete Metamorphosis
When an insect develops into an adult directly from the larvae stage without the pupa stage occurring. Young resemble adults.
Incubate
To keep animal eggs warm until they are ready the hatch as in birds and reptiles.
Insectivore
An animal that feeds primarily on insects such as an anteater.
Invertebrate
An animal that lacks a backbone.
Insect
An arthropod with six legs and a three sectioned body, a head, thorax and abdomen.
Instar
The stage between two molts during an insects life cycle.
Ivory
The substance that elephants and walruses tusks are made of.
Jacobson's Organ
An organ located in the roof of the mouth in some animals and is used to detect odour.
Juvenile
An animal that has not yet reached adult stage.
Keratin
A material in which animals horns and scales are made from (as well as human fingernails).
Krill
Small shrimp-like creatures that live in the oceans.
Lagomorph
A member of the rabbit and hare family.
Larvae
The young stage of an animal whose appearance differs from that of the adult form, such as a tadpole before it develops into a frog.
Lepospondyls
Small amphibians that live in damp/wet habitats as adults.
Maggot
The larvae of a Fly.
Mammal
A warm-blooded animal that gives birth to live young and feeds their young on milk from milk producing glands.
Mandibles
An insects strong jaws used to chop up their food.
Marine
Referring to oceans and waters with dissolved salts, mainly sodium chloride.
Marsupial
A mammal that gives birth to under developed young who complete development in the pouch of its mother.
Matriarch
The leading female member of a group of animals such as elephants.
Maturity
A stage in an animals life when it is old enough to breed.
Maxillae
An insects second pair of jaws which are used to guide food into their mouths.
Metamorphosis
Several stages of development of an insect changing into an adult form.
Midnight Zone
The unlit black waters of the deep ocean below the twilight zone.
Migration
Long journey usually carried out by an animal at the end of a season.
Mimic
The use of colours and patterns to impersonate another animals appearance.
Mollusc
A soft-bodied creature with one or two shells.
Molt
An animal sheds an old skin to reveal a new skin beneath it.
Monoestrous
Having only one breeding season a year, typically in spring.
Monogamous
Having only one breeding partner at a time. Some animals such as swans, mate for life.
Monotreme
Mammals that lay eggs and may have a pouch.
Mucus
A sticky, slimy substance produced by many animals for protection or for sticking to a surface.
Mustelids
Members of the otter family.
Muzzle
The nose and jaws of animals such as dogs.
Nectar
A sweet substance produced by plants that attract pollinating insects such as bees.
Neurotoxin
A harmful venom produced by some snakes and spiders that can cause paralysis and stop the heart and lungs from functioning.
Nocturnal
Animals that are active at night and sleep during the day.
Nudibranchs
Sea slugs with are relatives of land slugs.
Nuptial Pad
A secondary sex characteristic present on some mature male frogs and salamanders. It is used by males to grasp females during amplexus.They can also be used in male to male combat in some species.
Nymph
The larvae of insects such as grasshoppers and dragonflies.
Omnivore
An animal that is eats both plant material and animal flesh.
Operculum
A bony flap which covers gills with slit along its rear edge, as in fish.
Opportunists
Animals that eat whatever they can find such as rats.
Organ
An internal part of an animal that has a special function.
Ornithologist
One who studies birds.
Osteoderm

A lump of bone present in the skin of reptiles that protects them from predators. Present in crocodiles and some lizards.

Oviparous
Animals that lay eggs, with little or no other embryonic development within the mother. This is the reproductive method of most fish, amphibians, reptiles, all birds, the monotremes and most insects and arachnids.
Ovipositor
The egg-laying tube of a female insect.
Parasite
A harm causing creature who obtains food or shelter from another living organism (called a 'Host'). Usually Fleas, Ticks and Mites.
Parthenogenesis
When a female can produce young without her eggs being fertilized by a male.
Pectoral
Front limbs or fins such as pectoral fins - the front side fins of a fish.
Pedipalps
A second pair of appendages which are covered with sensory hairs located at the front of an arachnids body.
Pelagic
Living in open waters, above the bottom (Benthic).
Pheromone
A chemical that some animals produce in order to attract a mate or breeding partner.
Phytoplankton
The tiny plants of the plankton.
Pigment
A substance that gives colour to eggs and feathers.
Pinniped
Flipper or fin feet - group name for aquatic animals (Seals and Sea Lions).
Placental
An animal that is developed in the placenta and are born fully developed.
Plankton
Microscopic animals and plants found in seas, oceans (marine plankton) and large lakes (freshwater plankton).
Plastron
The lower part of a tortoises or turtles shell.
Plumage
The covering of feathers on a birds body.
Pod
A group of whales or dolphins.
Pollen
Tiny grains made by the male part of a flower. In order for seeds to form, pollen must reach the female part of the flower (pollination). Insects such as bees help this process by carrying pollen between flowers as they feed.
Pollinator
An animal that carries pollen from flower to flower while eating nectar such as a bee.
Polygamous
A mating structure in which a single individual of one gender has exclusive access to several individuals of the opposite gender.
Polygynous
A animal mating pattern in which a male mates with more than one female in a single breeding season.
Polyp
A simple animal with a stalk-like body and a ring of tentacles on top such as Coral Polyps that build coral reefs.
Predator
A carnivore that hunts and kills other animals for food.
Preening
The process of cleaning feathers carried out by birds using their beaks and oil from their preen glands.
Prehensile
A body part which is capable of grasping like a hand. Some species of monkey have prehensile tails.
Prey
An animal that is hunted, killed and eaten by another animal (the predator).
Pride
A group of lions.
Primate
A group of mammals characterized by having five fingers on their hands to enable them to grasp objects and food.
Proboscidea
A group of mammals that includes elephants and their ancestors.
Proboscis
Mouthparts that are long tubes that coil and uncoil and are used to suck in food. Mostly present on butterflies, moths and flies.
Prolegs
A caterpillars strong leg-like projections.
Protozoo
Animals that consist of just one single cell.
Pupa (plural: Pupae)
The stage at which an insect rests between larvae and adult stages during metamorphosis.
Queen
The only egg laying female present in colonies of wasps, bees and ant.
Rainforest
A hot, humid forest near the equator that is home to many different species of animals.
Raptor
A bird of prey such as an Eagle, Falcon or Vulture.
Regurgitate
A process of bringing up food that has already been swallowed in order to feed the young. Mostly performed by birds.
Reptile
A cold-blooded vertebrate that has scaly skin and lays eggs on land.
Roosting
When a bird sleeps ar rests.
Respiration
Absorbing oxygen from the air into an animals body.
Ruminant
Hoofed mammal with specialized stomach chambers, usually four, to efficiently digest plant matter.
Rut
A period of time when antlered ungulates mate.During the rut (rutting period), males often rub their antlers or horns on trees or shrubs, fight with each other and seek estrus females by their scent.
Scales
Flat plates of keratin that cover an animals body for protection as in reptiles.
Scavenge
To feed upon the meat of a dead animal that has died from natural causes.
Scutes
Scales that have developed into bony plates such as on a tortoises carapace.
Sensory Hairs
Tiny hairs that are attached to nerves in insects that allow them to detect touch and sometimes, smell.
Sett
A badger burrow.
School
A large body of fish that swim and move around closely together.
Silk
Threads made from protein that are produced by spiders and other insects.
Simple Eyes
Eyes that contain just one lens and are present in spiders and other insects.
Sirenians
Group of sea mammals sometimes referred to as sea cows which includes Manatees.
Sloughing
The shedding of old skin.
Sounder
A group of pigs or peccaries.
Spawn
Amphibian eggs floating in clumps in or on the water.
Species
A group of similar living animals that reproduce to produce fertile young.
Spermatophore
A jelly-like substance produced by male amphibians during reproduction.
Spinnerets
Tubes which are located on the end of a spiders abdomen which produce silk to spin webs.
Spiracles
Small holes that run down the side of an insects abdomen and are used for breathing.
Spurs
Tiny remnants of back legs found on the body of male Boa snakes.
Sting
A sharp point located at the rear or at the end of a tail in which venom is produced such as in bees, wasps and scorpions.
Subspecies
A subdivision of a species of organisms, usually based on geographic distribution. The subspecies name is written in lowercase italics following the species name. For example, Gorilla gorilla gorilla is the western lowland gorilla, and Gorilla gorilla graueri is the eastern lowland gorilla.
Syrinx
A sound-producing organ in birds which is located where the windpipe meets the pipes leading to the lungs.
Tadpole
The larval stage in the development of a frog or toad.
Temnospondyl
Amphibians that have adapted to spend their entire adult life on dry land.
Terrestrial
Animals that live predominantly or entirely on land, as compared with aquatic animals, which live predominantly in or around water.
Territorial
When an animal defends an area that contains a nest, den or mating site and sufficient food resources for themselves and their young.
Territory
An area which is defended by an animal after it has acquired it for himself/herself.
Tetrapod
An animal that has four limbs.
Thermoreceptor
A sensory cell that detects heat.
Thorax
The centre segment of an insects body.
Timbals
Drum-like structures on and insects legs used to produce mating sounds.
Trilobite
Arthropods that have a three section body.
Tusk
A bony extended tooth as in elephants.
Twilight Zone
Dimly lit waters of the ocean below the epipelagic zone.
Ungulate
A hoofed animal. Ungulates include deer, sheep, elk, moose, caribou, ibex, goats, pronghorn and Asian and African antelope.
Valve
One part of a two part shell as in bivalves and mussels.
Velvet
A hairy skin that covers and protects the antlers of a deer.
Venom
A harmful substance produced by venomous animals to subdue or kill their prey.
Venomous
To describe an animal that produces venom such as a venomous snake or spider.
Vertebrae
The joining of bones to form a backbone.
Vertebrate
An animal that has a backbone or a notochord when young, that develops into a backbone as an adult. Includes mammals, reptiles, birds, amphibians and fish.
Viviparous
Animals that give birth to live young.
Warm-blooded
An animal that generates its own body heat rather than having to absorb heat from its environment.
Waterfowl
A bird with a beak and webbed feet that is adapted for life in or near water such as a duck, goose or swan.
Weaning
The process of gradually introducing a mammal infant to what will be its adult diet and withdrawing the supply of its mothers milk.
Web
A silken structure produced by a spider and used to catch prey.
Webbing
Flaps of skin between the toes of water animals used to enhance swimming.
Wing Case
The hard covering of a beetles hind wings.
Wing Span
The distance from the tipi of a birds wing to the tip of the opposite wing.
Worker
A member of a wasp, ant or termite colony that constructs nests, finds food and cares for the young. Workers do not mate.
Yolk
A food substance found in animals eggs to nourish the young.
Zooplankton
The tiny animals of the plankton.

Animal Corner™ for all your animal information!


 

Animal Custom Search

Copyright 2003- AnimalCorner™
Find An Animal Animal Corner Homepage