bentho-, benth-

(Greek: deep, depth; the fauna and flora of the bottom of the sea; sea bottom; depth [by extension, this element includes lake, river, and stream bottoms])

benthos
1. Those organisms attached to, living on, in or near the sea bed, river bed, or lake floor.
2. The biogeographic region at the bottom of a sea or ocean (or, more broadly, at the soil-water interface of an ocean, sea, or lake). The organisms living in such a region include the permanently attached or immobile forms (e.g., sponges, corals, oysters), creeping forms (e.g., crabs, snails), and the burrowing animals (e.g., worms). Barnacles, the larger seaweeds, and sea squirts are also members of this group.
3. The organisms living on sea or lake bottoms. The benthos are divided into sessile organisms (those that are attached to the bottom or to objects on or near the bottom) snd vagrant organisms (those that crawl or swim along the bottom).

For more information, see Benthos Addendum.

benthoscope
A modified bathysphere (a strong steel diving sphere that can be lowered by cable to depths of 3,000 feet (900 meters).
endobenthos, endobenthic
Organisms living within the sediment on the sea bed or lake floor; infauna.
epibenthic
The community of organisms living at the surface of the sea bed or lake floor.
epibenthos
1. The community of organisms living at the surface of the sea bed or lake floor.
2. Fauna and flora of sea-bottom between low-water mark and hundred-fathom line or the 200-meter line.
eurybenthic, eurybenthos, eurybenthous
Living on the sea or lake bed over a wide range of depth.
geobenthos
1. The sum total of all terrestrial life.
2. That part of the bottom of a stream or lake not covered by vegetation.
haptobenthos
Those aquatic organisms that live closely applied to, or growing on, submerged surfaces.
herpobenthos, herpobenthic
Those organisms growing or moving through muddy sediments.
holobenthos, holobenthic
Living in the depths of the sea at all stages of the life cycle.
hyperbenthos, hyperbenthic
Living above but close to the substratum.
macrobenthos, macrobenthic
The larger organisms of the benthos, exceeding one mm in length.
meiobenthos, meiobenthic
1. That section of the benthos that includes animals neither small enough to be grouped with the microfauna nor large enough to be grouped with the macrofauna.
2. Small benthic organisms that pass through 1 mm mesh sieve but are retained by a 0.1 mm mesh.
mesobenthos, mesobenthic
1. Those organisms inhabiting the sea-bed in the archibenthal zone, between 200 and 1,000 meters in depth.
2. The sea bottom at depths of 100-500 fathoms (180-900 meters).
microbenthos, microbenthic
Microscopic benthic organisms less than 0.1 mm in length.

Inter-related cross references, directly or indirectly, involving the "sea" and the "ocean" bodies of water: abysso- (bottomless); Atlantic; batho-, bathy- (depth); halio-, halo- (salt or "the sea"); mare, mari- (sea); necto-, nekto- (swimming); oceano-; pelago- (sea, ocean); plankto- (drifting); thalasso- (sea, ocean).