any forked part or organ, as the wishbone of birds or the forked tail of certain springing insects
Origin of furculaModL, forked support, diminutive of Classical Latin furca, a fork
nounpl. fur·cu·lae Zoology
A forked part or bone, such as the wishbone of a bird. Also called fourchette.
Origin of furculaLatin, diminutive of furca, fork.
(plural furculae or furculæ)
- (anatomy) A forked process or structure, generally two-pronged.
- (ornithology) The forked bone formed by the fusion of the clavicles in birds, the wishbone or merrythought.
- (entomology) The (two-pronged) forked, somewhat tail-like organ held bent forward and secured by a catch beneath most species of Collembola (springtails), with which they jump by releasing the catch abruptly when alarmed.