Definition of seta in English:


Line breaks: seta
Pronunciation: /ˈsiːtə

noun (plural setae /-tiː/)

chiefly Zoology
  • 1A stiff hair-like or bristle-like structure, especially in an invertebrate.
    More example sentences
    • Each feeding leg, split into two branches, carries stiff bristles and feathery setae.
    • Ice worms propel themselves using setae, extremely small bristles that protrude from the sides of their bodies.
    • Inside their gill chambers are mats and hair-like setae covered in bacteria.
  • 1.1 Botany (In a moss or liverwort) the stalk supporting the capsule.
    More example sentences
    • Only the youngest sporophytes with unelongated setae were used.
    • Similarly, setae may be simple stalks with single spatulate tips, or they may be sparsely or profusely branched.



Pronunciation: /-ˈteɪʃəs/


More example sentences
  • If this is the case, setal morphology would have a greater effect on force of adhesion than surface chemistry of the seta or substrate.
  • The krill then squirt the seawater sideways through their setal filters, entrapping algae in a feeding pattern much like the baleen whales.
  • The width of the setal tips also varies between taxa.


late 18th century: from Latin, 'bristle'.

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