top of page



How to pronounce pelagic (audio)


Monster Trucks in Space

Dictionary definition of pelagic

Relating to the open ocean or the vast expanses of the sea away from the coast.
"The blue shark is a pelagic species known for its long migrations across the open ocean."


Detailed meaning of pelagic

It refers to the ecological or geographical aspects of the open ocean environment, which includes the water column from the surface to the depths. Pelagic regions are characterized by their vastness and the absence of any direct connection to the seafloor or coastal areas. Organisms and phenomena that inhabit or occur in this open ocean realm are often referred to as pelagic. Examples of pelagic organisms include fish, whales, dolphins, and various species of plankton. The pelagic zone is known for its unique conditions, such as deep waters, significant water movement, and abundant marine life. The term 'pelagic' is used in marine biology, oceanography, and other scientific disciplines to describe the distinct features and processes occurring in the open ocean environment.

Example sentences containing pelagic

1. The pelagic zone is home to a diverse array of marine species, from tiny plankton to massive whales.
2. Pelagic birds, such as albatrosses and petrels, spend most of their lives soaring over the open ocean.
3. The research vessel conducted pelagic surveys to study the distribution of fish populations.
4. The pelagic ecosystem is influenced by factors like temperature, currents, and nutrient availability.
5. The pelagic waters shimmered under the midday sun, inviting sailors to explore their depths.
6. Deep-sea explorers discovered a fascinating pelagic jellyfish species at great depths.

History and etymology of pelagic

The adjective 'pelagic' traces its etymological roots to ancient Greek. It finds its origin in the Greek word 'pelagos,' which means 'open sea' or 'vast expanse of water.' This term was used to describe the immense and often mysterious expanses of the open ocean that sailors and explorers encountered. The word 'pelagos' itself is derived from the Greek verb 'pelagéo,' which means 'to be in the open sea.' Over time, the term 'pelagic' was adopted into English in the mid-17th century to describe anything related to the open ocean or the vast areas of the sea far from the coast. Its etymology reflects the enduring influence of ancient Greek on scientific and nautical terminology, highlighting the rich linguistic history that informs our understanding of the world's oceans.

Quiz: Find the meaning of pelagic

Try Again!


Further usage examples of pelagic

1. Sailfish are renowned for their impressive pelagic leaps out of the water.
2. The pelagic zone is characterized by its vastness and the absence of physical structures like coral reefs or kelp forests.
3. The elusive pelagic squid uses bioluminescence to navigate and communicate in the dark depths.
4. The marine biologist's research focuses on the pelagic communities found in the Southern Ocean.
5. The documentary showcased the stunning beauty of pelagic creatures, capturing their grace and adaptability in the open ocean.
6. The sailors marveled at the pelagic beauty of the open sea.
7. Dolphins are often seen leaping in pelagic waters.
8. The albatross is a master of pelagic flight.
9. Deep-sea creatures thrive in the pelagic zone.
10. Many migratory birds cover vast pelagic distances.
11. Research vessels explore the mysteries of pelagic ecosystems.
12. The pelagic world holds secrets yet to be uncovered.
13. Whales breach majestically in the pelagic expanse.
14. Pelagic fish species are known for their long migrations.
15. She dreamed of sailing across pelagic horizons.
16. The pelagic realm is a realm of constant movement.
17. Submarines delve into the depths of pelagic darkness.
18. The pelagic zone teems with life, both big and small.
19. Marine biologists study pelagic ecosystems with fascination.
20. The pelagic environment can be unforgiving and harsh.
21. Sharks are apex predators in pelagic food chains.
22. The pelagic expedition yielded surprising discoveries.
23. Many marine species spawn in pelagic waters.
24. Pelagic birds have adapted to a life at sea.
25. The pelagic world is a place of endless wonder and challenge.



oceanic, terrestrial, land-based, inland


SAT 16 (Scholastic Assessment Test), Ecological Diversity and Sustainability, Wildlife and Environment

bottom of page