Furcula

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furcula

[′fər·kyə·lə]
(zoology)
A forked structure, especially the wishbone of fowl.

Furcula

 

or wishbone, an arc-shaped bone of the shoulder girdle of birds, formed by the connate clavicles.

The furcula may be connected to the sternum, while its upper ends are connected with the scapulae and coracoid bones. The furcula gives the shoulder girdle elasticity. This structure has existed since the time of the archeopteryx. It is well developed in birds that fly easily and less so in those that fly poorly. In some parrots and owls the furcula is not connate, but both its branches are connected by a fibrous ligament. In flightless ratite birds the furcula is rudimentary, and the clavicles are either not joined or absent altogether, as in the kiwi or the extinct moa.

References in periodicals archive ?
the supra-anal plate is subpentagonal, surface with a broad deep median sulcus in proximal third only; furculae represented by two small digitiform projections.
The supra-anal plate (Figs 10, 31) is subpentagonal, surface with a broad deep medium sulcus in proximal portion only; furculae represented by two small digitiform projections.
The supra-anal plate (Figs 16, 31 vs 4a, b, 31) and furculae differ as follows: in N.
Furculae represented by two digitiform, robust, rounded projections.
Furculae represented by two small, digitiform, robust, projections slightly longer than broad, with rounded tip.
Furculae represented by two digitiform, robust, projections, longer than broad, with rounded tip.
25) with furculae absent or barely marked as undulations of margin of 10th segment, placed far apart; epiproct subquadrate with small triangular projection in posterior edge; cerci very large, strongly incurved, their apices spatulate (similar to those of A.
26) with triangular furculae placed close together, epiproct triangular with slightly curved sides, cerci simple, conical, not reaching end of epiproct.