Skip to main content
Select Source:

appendicular skeleton

appendicular skeleton The part of the vertebrate endoskeleton that is composed of paired fin or limb bones, and the pelvis. Fins of vertebrate fish have a basic morphology composed of three elements: a small number of fan-like basal elements support a greater number of cylindrical radials, which in turn support a large number of fin rays. These may be soft and flexible (soft rays) or hard and inflexible (fin spines), supporting the fin web. The limbs of tetrapods articulate with a pectoral (scapula) or pelvic (pelvis) girdle and consist of five segments: the propodium (humerus or femur); epipodium (ulna/radius or fibula/tibula); mesopodium (carpus or tarsus); metapodium (metacarpus or metatarsus); and phalanges. Although pectoral and pelvic fin and limb appendages have an apparently homologous structure, they are derived serially from different body segments. Compare AXIAL SKELETON. See also PENTADACTYL.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"appendicular skeleton." A Dictionary of Zoology. . Encyclopedia.com. 23 May. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"appendicular skeleton." A Dictionary of Zoology. . Encyclopedia.com. (May 23, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/appendicular-skeleton

"appendicular skeleton." A Dictionary of Zoology. . Retrieved May 23, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/appendicular-skeleton

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.

appendicular skeleton

appendicular skeleton The components, collectively, of the vertebrate skeleton that are attached to the main supporting, or axial, skeleton. The appendicular skeleton is made up of paired appendages (e.g. legs, wings, arms) together with the pelvic girdle and pectoral girdle.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"appendicular skeleton." A Dictionary of Biology. . Encyclopedia.com. 23 May. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"appendicular skeleton." A Dictionary of Biology. . Encyclopedia.com. (May 23, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/appendicular-skeleton-0

"appendicular skeleton." A Dictionary of Biology. . Retrieved May 23, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/appendicular-skeleton-0

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.