cot·​ton·​tail | \ ˈkä-tᵊn-ˌtāl How to pronounce cottontail (audio) \

Definition of cottontail

: any of several rather small North American rabbits (genus Sylvilagus) sandy to grayish brown in color with a white-tufted underside of the tail

Examples of cottontail in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Currently, only cottontail rabbits can make it through the barrier’s four-inch-wide bollards. Stephania Taladrid, The New Yorker, 30 Apr. 2022 National Park Service rangers warn that a rare virus is sickening and killing wild cottontail rabbits in Dinosaur National Monument. NBC News, 7 Apr. 2022 An array of plants and animals — including white-tailed deer, cottontail rabbits, jackrabbits, and birds such as flycatchers, olive sparrows, and two types of tropical kingfishers — call the area home. Amanda Ogle, Travel + Leisure, 7 Feb. 2022 Virginia opossum, cottontail rabbit, white-tail deer and coyote. Megan Rodriguez, San Antonio Express-News, 18 Nov. 2021 One moment when all was very quiet, the whistling song of a Northern cardinal pierced the silence, while an Eastern cottontail rabbit hopped through the grasses. Jeanine Barone, Forbes, 31 Oct. 2021 Unlike squirrels found in Alaska, fox squirrels are big, almost as much meat as a cottontail rabbit, and delicious on the table. Steve Meyer, Anchorage Daily News, 14 Nov. 2020 To date, six counties, including San Diego, have detected the disease in wild cottontail rabbits and/or jackrabbits. San Diego Union-Tribune, 24 May 2021 Each cocoa cottontail is hand-made and can require up to two business days, so hop to it and secure one for your tablescape. Joanna O'leary, Chron, 29 Mar. 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of cottontail

1835, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for cottontail

Time Traveler

The first known use of cottontail was in 1835

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Dictionary Entries Near cottontail

cotton sweep


cotton teal

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Statistics for cottontail

Last Updated

8 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Cottontail.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Jul. 2022.

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More Definitions for cottontail


cot·​ton·​tail | \ ˈkä-tᵊn-ˌtāl How to pronounce cottontail (audio) \

Kids Definition of cottontail

: a small rabbit with a white tail

More from Merriam-Webster on cottontail

Nglish: Translation of cottontail for Spanish Speakers


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