Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Wikipedia.
a superfamily of invertebrates of the order Cirripedia (barnacles). The body is enclosed in a small calcareous shell, which is attached to a substrate. The shell is up to 20 cm high and 10 cm wide and consists of several plates. The four plates forming the top of the shell can move apart, so that the limbs can be thrust out to comb the water for food particles. There are about 250 species. In the seas of the USSR, barnacles of the genus Balanus are common. The Balanomorpha primarily inhabit coastal shallows. Some species are able to tolerate extreme decreases in salinity. The invertebrates adhere to ships and underwater structures. Species of the genus Coronula live on whales.