- having an unequally divided tail, characteristic of sharks, rays, and skates.
Origin of heterocercal
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for heterocercal
The tail may be heterocercal, as in Acipenser, or diphycercal as in Polypterus.The Vertebrate Skeleton
Sidney H. Reynolds
The caudal fin is at first symmetrical, but a special lower lobe grows out and gives to it a heterocercal character.The Works of Francis Maitland Balfour, Volume III (of 4)
Francis Maitland Balfour
The tail is asymmetrical (heterocercal), and numerous placoid scales (dermal denticles) are embedded in the skin.
They have small scales, a heterocercal tail, and two dorsal fins with a strong spine in front.
The heterocercal tail is one in which the hindmost vertebræ are bent upwards.A Guide to the Study of Fishes, Volume 1 (of 2)
David Starr Jordan
- ichthyol of or possessing a tail in which the vertebral column turns upwards and extends into the upper, usually larger, lobe, as in sharksCompare homocercal
C19: from hetero- + Greek kerkos tail
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012