Definition of gastrolith in US English:



  • 1Zoology
    A small stone swallowed by a bird, reptile, or fish to aid digestion in the gizzard.

    • ‘The presence of gastroliths (gizzard stones) in the rib cages of some specimens shows that this view is correct.’
    • ‘The diet of the edentulous forms is unclear, but a recent discovery of gastroliths in an undescribed Chinese ornithomimosaur may indicate a herbivorous/granivorous diet for at least this species.’
    • ‘However, the Seismosaurus fossil found with the most gastroliths held only 15 kg of stones, the largest no bigger than a grapefruit.’
    • ‘Such stomach stones or gastroliths have been reported from the gut regions or found nearby of prosauropods, sauropods and ornithopods.’
    • ‘One of the avian characteristics of the emus is that they also eat small stones (called gastroliths or gizzard stones).’
  • 2Medicine
    A hard concretion in the stomach.