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 (no͞o-măt′ə-fôr′, nyo͞o-, no͞o′mə-tə-, nyo͞o′-)
1. A gas-filled sac serving as a float in some colonial marine hydrozoans, such as the Portuguese man-of-war.
2. Botany A specialized respiratory root in certain aquatic plants, such as the bald cypress, that grows upward and protrudes above the water or mud into the air.


1. (Botany) a specialized root of certain swamp plants, such as the mangrove, that branches upwards, rising above ground, and undergoes gaseous exchange with the atmosphere
2. (Zoology) a polyp in coelenterates of the order Siphonophora, such as the Portuguese man-of-war, that is specialized as a float


(nʊˈmæt əˌfɔr, -ˌfoʊr, nyʊ-)

1. a specialized structure developed from the root in certain plants growing in swamps and marshes, serving as a respiratory organ.
2. the air sac of a siphonophore, serving as a float.
pneu•ma•toph•or•ous (ˌnu məˈtɒf ər əs, ˌnyu-) adj.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.pneumatophore - an air-filled root (submerged or exposed) that can function as a respiratory organ of a marsh or swamp plant
root - (botany) the usually underground organ that lacks buds or leaves or nodes; absorbs water and mineral salts; usually it anchors the plant to the ground
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References in periodicals archive ?
Finally, the mangroves will dissipate the wave energy with their propped roots, pneumatophores and trunks before the waves reach the shore.
Sponges, bivalves and seaweeds attached to the boulders, jetties, rocks on the shores, stones, pebbles, fishing nets and pneumatophores of mangrove were collected by scrapping.
As black mangroves become more abundant in the northern GOM, their pneumatophores may provide more protection from predators than Spartina stems, and therefore improve the refuge value of estuarine nursery habitat for fishery species, including penaeid shrimps.
The pneumatophores are mostly submerged, but are exposed to air during low tide.
The plants found on the first two zones exhibit most of the morphological and physiological adaptations (aerial, slilt roots, pneumatophores, vivipary, salt-tolerance, etc.
It is considerable the high density of pneumatophores, which are sometimes used as attachment points of seaweed and animals, and over which it is possible to walk easily (Table 4).
Avicennia marina, is dominating in the investigated area with its characteristic system of hanging roots or pneumatophores.
Pneumatophores are like snorkels, helping the mangroves to breathe in air.
They obtain oxygen in the poorly aerated muddy substrate through an elaborate system of stilt roots and through specially adapted pneumatophores, aerial roots that bear more than a passing resemblance to asparagus.
pneumatophores and aerenchyma development in roots and stem bases.
In vitro, antibacterial comparative study between the pneumatophores of Xylocarpus moluccensis and H.
Bruguiera gymnorrhiza is an evergreen tree 8-35 m high, with straight trunk 40-90 cm in diameter, buttressed at base, and with many upright pneumatophores rising to 45 cm from long horizontal roots.