(pl., furculae) a forked process; paired structure at the base of the supraanal plate of some grasshoppers, often distinctive in size and shape and then useful in classification of closely related species - gram
The furcula ("little fork" in Latin) is a forked bone found in birds and some theropod dinosaur species, formed by the fusion of the two clavicles. It first appears in the fossil record in the archosaur Longisquamahttp://www.dinodata.org/index.php. In birds, its function is the strengthening of the thoracic skeleton to withstand the rigors of flight.
The furcula is a tail-like appendage shaped like a fork, found on the fourth abdominal segment of springtails. Present in most species, it is used for jumping when the animal is threatened. While at rest, it is folded under the abdomen and held there by a latch called "tenaculum", located on the third abdominal segment.