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A fossorial organism is one that is adapted to digging and life underground such as the badger, the naked mole-rat, and the mole salamanders Ambystomatidae. It is an adjective most commonly used to describe the habit of living underground, even if the physical adaptations are minimal — thus, most bees and many wasps are called "fossorial Hymenoptera", and a great many rodents are considered fossorial. Some organisms are fossorial to aid in temperature regulation, while others utilize the underground habitat for protection from predators or food storage.[1]

An animal is said to be subfossorial if it shows limited adaptations to a fossorial lifestyle.

From Latin fossor, digger, from fodere, to dig.

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  1. ^ BBC-nature "Burrower videos, news and facts". BBC Nature. Retrieved September 2012.