Bryozoa

plural noun
Bryo·zoa | \ ˌbrīəˈzōə \

Definition of Bryozoa 

1 : a small phylum of aquatic animals that reproduce by budding, that usually form branching, flat, or mosslike colonies permanently attached on stones or seaweeds and enclosed by an external cuticle soft and gelatinous or rigid and chitinous or calcareous, and that consist of complex zooids each having an alimentary canal with distinct mouth and anus surrounded by a true coelom and associated with a protrusible lophophore — see avicularium, vibraculum; bugula , entoprocta, gymnolaemata, phylactolaemata

2 in some classifications : a class or other division of Molluscoidea comprising the Bryozoa and the Entoprocta

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History and Etymology for Bryozoa

New Latin, from bry- + -zoa

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