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Parasitism – an interaction of species populations in which one organism lives in or on another from which it obtains food, shelter, amd other requirements

Parthenogenesis – the development of an individual from an egg without that egg undergoing fertilization

Patriarchal – a social group that is led by the dominant male

Passerine – small- to medium-sized birds characterized by having feet adapted for perching and containing over 60% of all known birds

Pelagic – inhabiting the open water

Perissodactyl – an odd-toed ungulate

Pheromone – a chemical substance produced and released into the environment by an animal which then elicits a physiological and/or behavioral response in another individual of the same species

Photophore – light producing organ found on some deep-sea fish

Photosynthesis – the process by which green plants and some other organisms use sunlight to synthesize foods from carbon dioxide and water

Phylum – taxonomic classification below kingdom

Piebald – an animal that has a pattern of pigmented spots on an unpigmented background of hair, feathers, or scales

Pinniped – a carnivorous mammal adapted for a semiaquatic marine lifestyle and having limbs modified into flippers

Piscivore – an animal that feeds on fish

Pit Organ – in certain snakes, an organ used warm-blooded prey

Placenta – the organ by which embryos of viviparous species are nourished and waste products removed

Placental – a mammal that cares for its young with a placenta

Plankton – aquatic organisms that drift with water movements

Plantigrade – gait in which the entire foot makes contact with the ground

Plastron – the bottom part of a turtle or tortoise shell

Platyrhine – (in primates) having separated nostrils that face to the side

Poaching – to illegally hunt or steal game

Poison – a toxin that is capable of causing illness or death in living organisms when introduced or absorbed

Pollinator – an organism that moves pollen from one flower to another

Polydont – having numerous teeth

Polyphyodont – having teeth that are continuously replaced

Precocial – young animals which are born with their eyes and ears open and are able to stand and walk, regulate their body temperature, and excrete without assistance

Predation – an interaction between species in which one organism obtains energy by consuming, usually killing, another

Predator Satiation – antipedator adaptation in which prey briefly occur at high population densities, reducing the probability of an individual organism being eaten

Prehensile – an appendage or organ adapted for grasping and holding

Premolar – one of the deciduous cheek teeth that are located between the canines and molars

Primate – an order of mammals characterized by large brains and adaptations for an arboreal lifestyle

Proboscidean – the order that constitutes elephants and their relatives

Proboscis – tubular protrusion from the anterior of an animal

Producer -an organism that makes its own food

Pterosaur – prehistoric reptiles capable of powered flight

Pupa – the stage in the life cycle of an insect during which the larval form is reorganized to form the final, adult form

Quadruped – an animal that walks on four legs

Rainforest – forest characterized by very high rainfall

Raptor – a bird of prey

Raptorial – being adapted for predation

Reef – a ridge of jagged rock, coral, or sand just above or below the surface of the sea

Reptile – group fop cold-blooded animals characterized by having scaly skin and laying eggs

Retractile – a claw that is capable of being pulled back

Rodent -order of primarily herbivorous mammals characterized by the presence of paired, continuously growing incisors

Root – the part of the tooth below the gumline

Rostrum – (in fish) forward projection or extension of the snout

Ruminant – suborder of artiodactyls in which the stomach is complex and food is brought up into the mouth for a second round of mastication

Rut – the mating season of ruminant animals

Saltatorial – being adapted for jumping

Sauropod – order of large, quadrupedal dinosaurs characterized by long necks and tails

Savannah – a plain characterized by coarse grasses and scattered tree growth, espcially on the margins of the tropics where rainfall is seasonal

Scale – an outer protective layer made up of flat, rigid, overlapping plates

Scansorial – being adapted for climbing

School – an aggregation of fish which are observed swimming together, usually of the same species, age, and size

Scute – an enlarged, bony dermal plate or scale

Serrated – (of teeth) possessing jagged edges to increase cutting ability

Sexual Dimorphism – the occurrence of morphological differences that distinguish males from females of a species of organism

Sexual Selection – natural selection arising through preference by one sex for certain characteristics in individuals of the other sex

Shell – a hard outer layer of a marine animal

Species – a group of organisms that resemble one another closely

Spinarret – (in spiders) silk handling organs

Sprawling Posture – walking with limbs positioned to the side of the body and bent at right angles

Squalene -oil found in shark liver that aids in buoyancy control

Strepsarrhine – (in primates) having a wet nose and a cleft upper lip bound to the gum

Suction Feeding – method of ingesting prey item in fluids by sucking it into the predator’s mouth via expansion of the oral cavity and/or throat

Suid – family of omnivorous ungulates consisting of pigs and characterized sparse, course body hair, well-developed tusks, and a flexible, cartilaginous disc on the end of the snout

Swim Bladder – a thin-walled, gas-filled sac that helps fish regulate their buoyancy

Symbiosis – situation in which dissimilar organisms live together in close association

Synapsid – subclass of reptiles characterized by the presence of a single skull opening behind the eyes

Syndactyl – having digits that are fused together

Tadpole – the round-bodied, long-tailed larva of an anuran amphibian

Talon – the claw of a bird of prey

Tame – an animal that is not dangerous to or frightened of humans

Tapetum Lucidum – layer f tissue within the retina that reflects back light and aids in nocturnal vision

Taxonomy – the scientific classification of organisms

Teleost – fish characterized by having a terminal mouth and bony skeleton

Temperate – a climate or region characterized by mild temperatures

Tendon – a flexible but inelastic cord of strong fibrous tissue attaching a muscle to a bone

Tentacle – an elongated, flexible structure found in invertebrates that is used for sensory reception and/or obtaining food

Testudine – group of reptiles consisting of turtles and tortoises

Tetrapod – vertebrate animal possessing four limbs

Thecodont – having teeth that are set in sockets

Theropod – group of bipedal, carnivorous dinosaurs that also includes birds

Thyreophoran – group of dinosaurs characterized by the presence of dermal armor

Thorax – the segment of an insect between the head and the abdomen

Tonic Immobility – natural state of paralysis some animals enter

Toxin – any poisonous substance of plant or animal origin

Trace Fossil – a fossil consisting of a mark or imprint left by an organism, usually indicative of behavior

Tropical – a non-arid climate with hot, non-polar temperatures year-round

Tundra – a flat, treeless plain in which the subsoil is permanently frozen

Tusk – a long, pointed, protruding tooth used for non-eating purposes and often sexually selected for in males


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