An arthropod is an animal with no internal spine, a body made of joined segments, and a hard covering, like a shell. Spiders are one type of arthropod.

Many different kinds of animals fall into the category known as arthropods, most of them insects or spiders, but also including crustaceans like shrimp, crabs, and lobsters. Their bodies are jointed and they have an exoskeleton, their hard outer covering. The Modern Latin root is Arthropoda, which is also the name of the animals' phylum, and which means "those with jointed feet."

Definitions of arthropod
  1. noun
    invertebrate having jointed limbs and a segmented body with an exoskeleton made of chitin
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    an extinct arthropod that was abundant in Paleozoic times; had an exoskeleton divided into three parts
    arachnid, arachnoid
    air-breathing arthropods characterized by simple eyes and four pairs of legs
    general term for any terrestrial arthropod having an elongated body composed of many similar segments: e.g. centipedes and millipedes
    Scutigerella immaculata, garden centipede, garden symphilid, symphilid
    minute arthropod often infesting the underground parts of truck-garden and greenhouse crops
    an arthropod of the division Tardigrada
    chiefly nocturnal predacious arthropod having a flattened body of 15 to 173 segments each with a pair of legs, the foremost pair being modified as prehensors
    millepede, milliped, millipede
    any of numerous herbivorous nonpoisonous arthropods having a cylindrical body of 20 to 100 or more segments most with two pairs of legs
    pycnogonid, sea spider
    any of various small spiderlike marine arthropods having small thin bodies and long slender legs
    Merostomata, class Merostomata
    used in some classifications; includes the orders Xiphosura and Eurypterida
    Limulus polyphemus, Xiphosurus polyphemus, horseshoe crab, king crab
    large marine arthropod of the Atlantic coast of North America having a domed carapace that is shaped like a horseshoe and a stiff pointed tail; a living fossil related to the wood louse
    Asian horseshoe crab
    horseshoe crab of the coast of eastern Asia
    large extinct scorpion-like arthropod considered related to horseshoe crabs
    pentastomid, tongue worm
    wormlike arthropod having two pairs of hooks at the sides of the mouth; parasitic in nasal sinuses of mammals
    any mainly aquatic arthropod usually having a segmented body and chitinous exoskeleton
    onychophoran, peripatus, velvet worm
    any of numerous velvety-skinned wormlike carnivorous animals common in tropical forests having characteristics of both arthropods and annelid worms
    small air-breathing arthropod
    an insect or other arthropod between molts
    Phalangium opilio, daddy longlegs, harvestman
    spiderlike arachnid with a small rounded body and very long thin legs
    arachnid of warm dry regions having a long segmented tail ending in a venomous stinger
    false scorpion, pseudoscorpion
    small nonvenomous arachnid resembling a tailless scorpion
    whip scorpion, whip-scorpion
    nonvenomous arachnid that resembles a scorpion and that has a long thin tail without a stinger
    predatory arachnid with eight legs, two poison fangs, two feelers, and usually two silk-spinning organs at the back end of the body; they spin silk to make cocoons for eggs or traps for prey
    mite or tick
    Scutigera coleoptrata, house centipede
    long-legged centipede common in damp places as e.g. cellars
    malacostracan crustacean
    a major subclass of crustaceans
    decapod, decapod crustacean
    crustaceans characteristically having five pairs of locomotor appendages each joined to a segment of the thorax
    typical crabs
    stomatopod, stomatopod crustacean
    a kind of crustacean
    branchiopod, branchiopod crustacean, branchiopodan
    aquatic crustaceans typically having a carapace and many pairs of leaflike appendages used for swimming as well as respiration and feeding
    copepod, copepod crustacean
    minute marine or freshwater crustaceans usually having six pairs of limbs on the thorax; some abundant in plankton and others parasitic on fish
    mussel shrimp, ostracod, seed shrimp
    tiny marine and freshwater crustaceans with a shrimp-like body enclosed in a bivalve shell
    barnacle, cirriped, cirripede
    marine crustaceans with feathery food-catching appendages; free-swimming as larvae; as adults form a hard shell and live attached to submerged surfaces
    Plicatoperipatus jamaicensis
    a kind of onychophoran
    social insect
    an insect that lives in a colony with other insects of the same species
    ephemeral, ephemeron
    anything short-lived, as an insect that lives only for a day in its winged form
    holometabola, metabola
    insects that undergo complete metamorphosis
    an insect that strips the leaves from plants
    an insect that carries pollen from one flower to another
    any of various insects that deposit their eggs in plants causing galls in which the larvae feed
    any of various carnivorous insects of the order Mecoptera
    collembolan, springtail
    any of numerous minute wingless primitive insects possessing a special abdominal appendage that allows the characteristic nearly perpetual springing pattern; found in soil rich in organic debris or on the surface of snow or water
    proturan, telsontail
    any of several minute primitive wingless and eyeless insects having a cone-shaped head; inhabit damp soil or decaying organic matter
    insect having biting mouthparts and front wings modified to form horny covers overlying the membranous rear wings
    web spinner
    any of a small order of slender typically tropical insects that nest in colonies in silken tunnels that they spin
    louse, sucking louse
    wingless usually flattened bloodsucking insect parasitic on warm-blooded animals
    bird louse, biting louse, louse
    wingless insect with mouth parts adapted for biting; mostly parasitic on birds
    any wingless bloodsucking parasitic insect noted for ability to leap
    dipteran, dipteron, dipterous insect, two-winged insects
    insects having usually a single pair of functional wings (anterior pair) with the posterior pair reduced to small knobbed structures and mouth parts adapted for sucking or lapping or piercing
    leaf miner, leaf-miner
    any of various small moths or dipterous flies whose larvae burrow into and feed on leaf tissue especially of the family Gracilariidae
    hymenopter, hymenopteran, hymenopteron, hymenopterous insect
    insects having two pairs of membranous wings and an ovipositor specialized for stinging or piercing
    sterile member of a colony of social insects that forages for food and cares for the larvae
    termite, white ant
    whitish soft-bodied ant-like social insect that feeds on wood
    orthopteran, orthopteron, orthopterous insect
    any of various insects having leathery forewings and membranous hind wings and chewing mouthparts
    phasmid, phasmid insect
    large cylindrical or flattened mostly tropical insects with long strong legs that feed on plants; walking sticks and leaf insects
    dictyopterous insect
    cockroaches and mantids
    general term for any insect or similar creeping or crawling invertebrate
    bug, hemipteran, hemipteron, hemipterous insect
    insects with sucking mouthparts and forewings thickened and leathery at the base; usually show incomplete metamorphosis
    heteropterous insect
    true bugs: insects whose forewings are membranous but have leathery tips
    homopteran, homopterous insect
    insects having membranous forewings and hind wings
    psocopterous insect
    small soft-bodied insect with chewing mouthparts and either no wings or two pairs
    ephemerid, ephemeropteran
    short-lived insect
    plecopteran, stone fly, stonefly
    primitive winged insect with a flattened body; used as bait by fishermen; aquatic gilled larvae are carnivorous and live beneath stones
    neuropteran, neuropteron, neuropterous insect
    insect having biting mouthparts and four large membranous wings with netlike veins
    large primitive predatory aquatic insect having two pairs of membranous wings
    trichopteran, trichopteron, trichopterous insect
    caddis fly
    thysanuran insect, thysanuron
    primitive wingless insects: bristletail
    thysanopter, thysanopteron, thysanopterous insect
    an insect of the order Thysanoptera
    any of numerous insects of the order Dermaptera having elongate bodies and slender many-jointed antennae and a pair of large pincers at the rear of the abdomen
    lepidopteran, lepidopteron, lepidopterous insect
    insect that in the adult state has four wings more or less covered with tiny scales
    an insect in the inactive stage of development (when it is not feeding) intermediate between larva and adult
    an adult insect produced after metamorphosis
    the only fertile female in a colony of social insects such as bees and ants and termites; its function is to lay eggs
    type of:
    any animal lacking a backbone or notochord; the term is not used as a scientific classification
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