Definition of countershading in US English:



  • Protective coloration of some animals in which parts normally in shadow are light and those exposed to the sky are dark.

    • ‘The countershading of their body is a protective camouflage.’
    • ‘We therefore report two experiments designed to test whether countershading enhances protection by diminishing the probability of detection by predators.’
    • ‘The coloration of transparent species, the lack of countershading, and the opacity of guts in deep-sea species are all hypothesized to be defenses against detection by bioluminescence.’
    • ‘Because countershading is thought to aid in concealment by reducing shadow in well-lit environments, the hypothesis is partially supported despite no significant associations with other open environments.’
    • ‘To blend into their environment, some marine mammals have countershading (their top side is darker that their underneath surfaces).’