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 (kə-do͞o′kəs, -dyo͞o′-)
Dropping off or shedding at an early stage of development, as the gills of most amphibians or the sepals or stipules of certain plants.

[From Latin cadūcus, falling, from cadere, to fall; see kad- in Indo-European roots.]


(Biology) biology (of parts of a plant or animal) shed during the life of the organism
[C17: from Latin cadūcus falling, from cadere to fall]


(kəˈdu kəs, -ˈdyu-)

1. Bot. dropping off very early, as leaves.
2. Zool. subject to shedding.
[1675–85; < Latin cadūcus unsteady, perishable =cad(ere) to fall + -ūcus adj. suffix; see -ous]
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Adj.1.caducous - shed at an early stage of development; "most amphibians have caducous gills"; "the caducous calyx of a poppy"
biological science, biology - the science that studies living organisms
lasting, persistent - retained; not shed; "persistent leaves remain attached past maturity"; "the persistent gills of fishes"
References in periodicals archive ?
5 mm long, caducous on the old parts, eventually persistent, discreetly viscose on the young branches, distributed on the branches, stipules, petioles, margin and midrib with leaflets, bracts, sepals, ovary and legumes.
Inflorescences produced before leaves, subtended by small bracts on reduced cymes with 2-5 flowers per cluster, flowers rarely solitary; peduncles stout, 2-3 mm long, pedicels slender, <2 mm long, with a basal small and caducous bracteole <1 mm, soon deciduous.
Vegetative reproduction by caducous leaves Mnioloma 15.
Corolla pentamerous, gamopetalous and caducous, with valvate aestivation, presumably rotate and reflexed.