Definition of oviposit in English:



[no object]Zoology
  • (especially of an insect) lay an egg or eggs.

    ‘larger females have the potential to oviposit on a greater number of hosts’
    • ‘Examples include butterflies ovipositing on host plants, beetles and flies on dung pats, parasitoid wasps on insect hosts, and many insects on seeds or fruit.’
    • ‘Females oviposit and larvae develop solely in the fruit.’
    • ‘After mating, the female ceases light emission and oviposits and continues to hold her body near to the eggs.’
    • ‘Potential egg layers were given 10 days in the oviposition chambers to oviposit.’
    • ‘Because they oviposit at high tide, their eggs incubate out of water, buried in the sand of some of the most heavily used urban beaches in this populous area.’


Early 19th century: from ovi- ‘egg’ + Latin posit- ‘placed’ (from the verb ponere).