AskDefine | Define operculum

Dictionary Definition

operculum n : a hard flap serving as a cover for (a) the gill slits in fishes or (b) the opening of the shell in certain gastropods when the body is retracted [also: opercula (pl)]

User Contributed Dictionary



from Latin operire, to close


  1. a covering flap or lidlike structure in plants and animals
  2. A part of the brain

Extensive Definition

In biology, operculum (Latin for "little lid") has been used to describe several different anatomical features, in animals, in humans and even in plants. The following list gives some of the uses of the term:
operculum in German: Operculum (Begriffsklärung)
operculum in Dutch: Operculum
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