benthonic zone


the biogeographic region that includes the bottom of a lake, sea, or ocean, and the littoral and supralittoral zones of the shore.
Also called benthic division, benthonic zone.

1890–95; < Greek bénthos depth (of the sea); akin to bathos, bathy- Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
benthos or benthon (ˈbɛnθɒs)
1.  the animals and plants living at the bottom of a sea or lake
2.  the bottom of a sea or lake
[C19: from Greek: depth; related to bathus deep]
benthon or benthon
[C19: from Greek: depth; related to bathus deep]
'benthic or benthon
'benthal or benthon
ben'thonic or benthon

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Word Origin & History

"life forms of the deep ocean and sea floor," 1891, coined by Haeckel from Gk. benthos "depth of the sea," related to bathos "depth," bathys "deep." Adjective benthic is attested from 1902.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
benthos  [%PREMIUM_LINK%]     (běn'thŏs')  Pronunciation Key 
  1. The bottom of a sea or lake.

  2. The organisms living on sea or lake bottoms. The benthos are divided into sessile organisms (those that are attached to the bottom or to objects on or near the bottom) and vagrant organisms (those that crawl or swim along the bottom). Compare nekton, plankton. See more at epifauna, infauna.

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