One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1(of a bird or other animal) predatory.
predacious, carnivorous, hunting, raveningView synonyms
- ‘No one would expect detailed management histories of otters, beavers, muskrats, raptorial birds, and yet the success story of the Yellowstone cutthroat trout is worth telling.’
- ‘Numerous explanations exist for the evolution of reversed size dimorphism in raptorial species.’
- ‘Compared to most raptorial birds, saw-whet owls are a very small-bodied species with high mass-specific metabolic costs.’
- ‘All species are sleek, raptorial predators, relying on fast locomotion (both in flight and on foot) and large mandibles to actively chase down a variety of arthropod prey.’
- ‘Rich explained the low relative abundances of vultures and other raptorial groups as consistent with the pattern of relatively low representation in modern avifaunas.’
- 1.1 (of a limb or other organ) adapted for seizing prey.
- ‘Note that the male in the image at right has much larger eyes and raptorial appendages.’
- ‘In addition, they have potent raptorial appendages, with which they produce extremely fast and powerful strikes.’
- ‘The hatchlings have a beak with a raptorial hook that they use to stab host nestlings.’
- ‘Their lethal raptorial appendages provide effective weapons for acquiring and defending these homes.’
- ‘However, its main claim to fame is its armament of raptorial claws, bearing a strong resemblance to those of the praying mantis - hence the name.’
Early 19th century: from Latin raptor ‘plunderer’ + -ial.
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