Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Any of various chordate marine animals of the subphylum Tunicata or Urochordata having a cylindrical or globular body enclosed in a tough outer covering and including the sea squirts and salps.
  • adj. Of or relating to the tunicates.
  • adj. Anatomy Having a tunic.
  • adj. Botany Having a tunic, as the bulb of an onion.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Any of very many chordate marine animals, of the subphylum Tunicata or Urochordata, including the sea squirts.
  • adj. Of or pertaining to these animals.
  • adj. Enclosed in a tunic or mantle; covered or coated with layers.
  • adj. Having each joint buried in the preceding funnel-shaped one, as in certain antennae of insects.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Covered with a tunic; covered or coated with layers.
  • adj.
  • adj. Having a tunic, or mantle; of or pertaining to the Tunicata.
  • adj. Having each joint buried in the preceding funnel-shaped one, as in certain antennæ of insects.
  • proper n. One of the Tunicata.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • In zoology, coated; covered with tunics or integuments; specifically, enveloped in membranous integuments or tunics, as an ascidian; of or pertaining to the Tunicata; tunicated.
  • In entomology, covered one by another, like a set of thimbles, as the joints of some antennæ.
  • In botany, covered with a tunic or membrane; coated.
  • n. A tunic.
  • n. An ascidian, tunicary, or sea-squirt; any member of the Tunicata.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. primitive marine animal having a saclike unsegmented body and a urochord that is conspicuous in the larva

Etymologies

Latin tunicātus, past participle of tunicāre, to clothe with a tunic, from tunica, tunic; see tunic.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Latin tunicatus, past participle of tunicare ("to clothe with a tunic"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • The predatory tunicate, a species of sea squirt, looks like a voracious, headless mouth on a glass stalk, and is unique among tunicates in being a true predator — its mouth closing swiftly on shrimp and other crustaceans that stray into it.

    Where Wonders Await Us

  • In the same way we can infer intelligence behind adding pictures to the same slide as he names them a fruit fly, a tunicate, a panda bear, a little girl, or Richard Dawkins.

    Evidence of Design? - The Panda's Thumb

  • And not just because of what the ride does to the poor helpless tunicate population, who should be calling an attorney right now and suing for misrepresentation, except, chances are, they're a bit short of cash at the moment.

    Orlando stuffage

  • But we will pass over these cases in order to dwell more particularly on the remarkable tunicate known as

    Young Folks' Library, Volume XI (of 20) Wonders of Earth, Sea and Sky

  • This first structure of the human heart, enclosing a very simple cavity, corresponds to the tunicate-heart, and is a reproduction of that of the Prochordonia, but it now divides into two, and subsequently into three, compartments; this reminds us for a time of the heart of the Cyclostomes and fishes.

    The Evolution of Man — Volume 2

  • Maybe something tunicate-like and sea squirtish back in the Cambrian, but surely not THESE sea squirts.

    Knight Science Journalism Tracker

  • Maritime fishermen will soon be able to test harbours and bays for the presence of tunicate at an early stage, helping them battle an invasive species and major pest for the mussel industry.

    CBC | Top Stories News

  • This peculiar evolutionary dynamics has hampered the reconstruction of tunicate phylogenetic relationships within chordates based on mitogenomic data.

    BioMed Central - Latest articles

  • However, it also presents a novel gene arrangement, highlighting the extreme plasticity of gene order observed in tunicate mitochondrial genomes.

    BioMed Central - Latest articles

  • An example is the colonial tunicate Botryllus schlosseri, where fusion establishes a common circulation system which mixes blood cells from each partner of the chimera.

    PLoS ONE Alerts: New Articles

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Comments

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  • "...overhung a small lagoon, the building set on sturdy silvered-wood pilings that rose from the water, crusted with a spongy growth of tunicates and mussels and the fine green seaweed called mermaid's hair."
    —Diana Gabaldon, Voyager (NY: Dell, 1994), 897

    January 17, 2010

  • Sadly, no. They're still pretty cool though, in an ur-chordate kind of way.

    June 4, 2007

  • Not a tunic-loving person?

    June 2, 2007

  • sea squirt

    June 1, 2007