brown-headed cowbird

noun
brown-head·​ed cowbird | \ ˈbrau̇n-ˌhe-dəd- How to pronounce brown-headed cowbird (audio) \

Definition of brown-headed cowbird

: a cowbird (Molothrus ater) widespread in the U.S. and southern Canada in which the male is black with a brown head and the female is gray The most famous brood parasites, the European cuckoo and the brown-headed cowbird, lay their eggs in nests of other species.— Charles R. Brown and Mary Bomberger Brown Sadly, the vireo is vulnerable to a nest parasite, the brown-headed cowbird, that flourishes near livestock and in urban fringe areas.— Karen D. Fishler

Examples of brown-headed cowbird in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Another requirement will be continued vigilance against brown-headed cowbirds, which invade warblers’ nests and displace their babies. John Flesher, Detroit Free Press, "Feds propose dropping Kirtland's warbler from endangered list," 11 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'brown-headed cowbird.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of brown-headed cowbird

1949, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of brown-headed cowbird was in 1949

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Cite this Entry

“Brown-headed cowbird.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/brown-headed%20cowbird. Accessed 4 Dec. 2020.

More from Merriam-Webster on brown-headed cowbird

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about brown-headed cowbird

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