Definition of houbara in US English:


(also houbara bustard)


  • A bustard of arid open country and semidesert, found from the Canary Islands to central Asia and threatened by hunting.

    Chlamydotis undulata, family Otidae

    • ‘The captive-bred houbaras missed out on these lessons, and many paid the price.’
    • ‘Superbly adapted to arid environments, wild houbaras do not need to drink water but manage to get all the moisture they need from their food.’
    • ‘The most exciting bird of the flight was a houbara bustard flying up from the dry desert scrub showing large white patches on its wings.’
    • ‘I confess to the herder that I don't really know what a houbara looks like, having only encountered the kori bustard of the savannah.’
    • ‘Her foxiness must have left a lasting impression on the young houbaras, because significantly more birds in the ‘trained’ group survived.’


Early 19th century: modern Latin, from Arabic ḥubārā.