Definition of parasitize in US English:


(British parasitise)


[with object]
  • Infest or exploit (an organism or part) as a parasite.

    • ‘This means that the unisexual females are actually parasitizing bisexual males of these other species.’
    • ‘Cowbirds inhabit most parts of North America, and they have been reported to parasitize many different species in almost any type of habitat.’
    • ‘Al concentrations in leaves of mistletoes parasitizing plants from the cerrado belt of Brazil depend on the nature of the host species.’
    • ‘The females just clone themselves, and the males replace all the female genetic material and essentially parasitise the females as reproductive incubators of their own genes.’
    • ‘However, in great spotted cuckoos thick-shelled eggs have not evolved for the same reason because this species parasitizes large birds that do not need to puncture the parasitic egg because they can easily grasp it.’
    • ‘A study has revealed that a small warbler [from the Indian Himalayas] is now so good at discriminating eggs on the basis of size that cuckoos no longer parasitize the species.’
    • ‘However, we did not record egg puncture at mockingbird nests at either study site, which suggests also that this species was not parasitized.’
    • ‘Bacteria in this group lack cell walls and cannot survive outside the cells of the organisms they parasitize.’
    • ‘Entamoeba are unicellular eukaryotes that frequently parasitize vertebrate species including human.’
    • ‘Those that parasitize agricultural insect pests may be beneficial.’
    • ‘Bacteria that parasitize other organisms must first break down some of their host's tissues before setting up shop.’
    • ‘Fitness costs vary greatly among host species in part because cowbirds parasitize host species at widely divergent frequencies, even among hosts breeding in the same habitat.’
    • ‘Today there is a variety of extant species that parasitize birds, reptiles, and rodents, as well as human and nonhuman primates.’
    • ‘One nest was parasitized after incubation had begun, and the cowbird egg in another nest did not hatch.’
    • ‘There, the worms continued to parasitize their hosts, and an isolated group evolved to become T. asiatica.’
    • ‘Some species will parasitize other organisms, such as zooplankton and other protists, filamentous algae, or fish.’
    • ‘Interspecific brood parasitism is the most common; hence, when brood parasites stop parasitizing a host, selection for rejection usually stops.’
    • ‘It occurs when one plant indirectly parasitizes a second plant through an EM fungus connected to both.’
    • ‘The order Strepsiptera are obligate endoparasitic insects that are known to parasitize seven insect orders, including solitary and social Hymenoptera.’
    • ‘The Yellow Warbler and the Song Sparrow are the two most often parasitized species in the United States.’