buz·​zard | \ ˈbə-zərd How to pronounce buzzard (audio) \

Definition of buzzard

1 chiefly British : buteo
2 : any of various usually large birds of prey (such as the turkey vulture)
3 : a contemptible or rapacious person

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Synonyms & Antonyms for buzzard


bloodsucker, harpy, kite, predator, shark, vampire, vulture, wolf



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Did You Know?

In Britain, the word buzzard refers chiefly to several birds of prey of the hawk genus Buteo. In North America, a buzzard is any of various New World vultures, especially the turkey vulture. In Australia, a large hawk of the genus Hamirostra is called a black-breasted buzzard. Buteos, also called buzzard hawks, can usually be distinguished when soaring by their broad wings and expansive rounded tail. The plumage of most species is dark brown above and white or mottled brown below; the tail and underside of the wings are usually barred. Buteos customarily prey on insects, small mammals, and occasionally birds. They nest in trees or on cliffs. Species range over much of the New World, Eurasia, and Africa. The red-tailed hawk, the most common North American buteo, is about 2 ft (60 cm) long.

Examples of buzzard in a Sentence

the real estate buzzards were really putting pressure on the one homeowner who was still refusing to sell that crotchety old man can be a real buzzard when he's in a bad mood—which is usually the case

Recent Examples on the Web

In addition to the breakfast, buzzard enthusiasts had plenty of other opportunities to get involved. Alyssa Alfano,, "Hinckley Chamber of Commerce celebrates 61st Buzzard Day," 20 Apr. 2017 These were honey-buzzards, heading south to winter quarters in Africa. Jenny Uglow, WSJ, "‘The Wonderful Mr. Willughby’ Review: Hatching a New Science," 5 July 2018 Just hours old, the little guy was exposed to the elements and just a few hours away from the buzzards circling. Angela Helm, The Root, "Washington, DC, Mayor Muriel Bowser Adopts Newborn in Surprise Announcement," 22 May 2018 Residents of the area, including the Rev. Ronald Smith and Phyllis Gosa, have alleged that since the landfill arrived, the town has been plagued by buzzards, foul odors, speeding garbage trucks and increased traffic on local roads. Dennis Pillion,, "Judge: EPA's delayed response to Alabama landfill complaint violated law," 5 Apr. 2018 Over the years, Kotulak has seen just about every sort of buzzard fan. Bruce Geiselman,, "Police arrest drunken driving suspect after crash: North Olmsted Police Blotter," 17 Mar. 2018 The buzzards may eventually be released into the wild. National Geographic, "Animals Rescued From the 'World’s Worst Zoo'," 26 Sep. 2016 Another good indicator is turkey buzzards and other soaring birds. David Patterson, star-telegram, "A Soaring Passion," 27 Oct. 2017 The company is trying to replicate what buzzards, falcons, hawks and other birds can do naturally: locate moving warm pockets of air called thermals and glide. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "These AI Gliders Hunt for Updrafts to Fly Forever," 16 Aug. 2017

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

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First Known Use of buzzard

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for buzzard

Middle English busard, from Old French, alteration of buison, from Latin buteon, buteo hawk

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Time Traveler for buzzard

The first known use of buzzard was in the 14th century

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English Language Learners Definition of buzzard

US : a kind of large bird that eats animals that are already dead
British : a kind of large hawk


buz·​zard | \ ˈbə-zərd How to pronounce buzzard (audio) \

Kids Definition of buzzard

: a usually large bird of prey that flies slowly

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More from Merriam-Webster on buzzard

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for buzzard

Spanish Central: Translation of buzzard

Nglish: Translation of buzzard for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about buzzard

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