Definition of zoea in English:

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Pronunciation: /zōˈēə/

noun (plural zoeae /zōˈēˌē/ or zoeas)

A larval form of certain crustaceans, such as the crab, having a spiny carapace and rudimentary limbs on the abdomen and thorax.
Example sentences
  • The carapace of a zoea covers the head and the forward portion of the thorax.
  • Anthony Rice has used morphology of zoea to develop phylogenies of subsets of decapods that provides a different insight into relationships.
  • The purpose of this study was to examine and identify Brachyuran zoea of the San Francisco Bay Estuary, then to generate a dichotomous key.


Early 19th century: modern Latin, from Greek zōē 'life'.

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