noun \ˈk\

: a black-and-white seabird of northern oceans

Full Definition of AUK

:  any of several black-and-white short-necked diving seabirds of the alcid family that breed in colder parts of the northern hemisphere — compare great auk

Illustration of AUK

Origin of AUK

Norwegian or Icelandic alk, alka, from Old Norse ālka
First Known Use: 1674

Rhymes with AUK


noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

In general, any of 22 species of diving birds (family Alcidae), especially the little auk and the razorbill, or razor-billed auk. Auks are 6–16 in. (15–40 cm) long, with short wings and legs and webbed feet. They occur only in Arctic, subarctic, and temperate regions (with a few species south to Baja California). Auks nest colonially on cliff ledges or in rock crevices or burrows near the sea; many spend the winter far from land. They feed on fish, crustaceans, mollusks, and plankton. True auks are black and white and stand erect on land. See also great auk.


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