mi·​gra·​to·​ry | \ ˈmī-grə-ˌtȯr-ē How to pronounce migratory (audio) \

Definition of migratory

1 : of, relating to, or characterized by migration

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Synonyms & Antonyms for migratory


migrant, mobile


nonmigrant, nonmigratory, resident

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Examples of migratory in a Sentence

most of the apple crop is picked by migratory workers migratory birds heading south for the winter

Recent Examples on the Web

La Tovara National Park is home to over 500 species of birds, as well as being a refuge for migratory birds. Mark Rogers, USA TODAY, "New Mexico hot spot: Riviera Nayarit caters to families with new resorts and attractions," 4 June 2019 The snapshot shows the couple putting a tracking collar on an elephant to help conservationists follow its migratory patterns to keep it safe from poaching. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Meghan Markle and Prince Harry Shared a Previously Unseen Photo From Their Botswana Trip," 4 Apr. 2019 Carlisle and his group forcus their research on understanding the reproductive success of the curlews in different habitats as well as studying migratory patterns using lightweight satellite transmitters. Kevin Davenport, idahostatesman, "Why are curlews declining in Idaho? Turns out, humans are their most deadly predator.," 18 June 2018 Now, the specimens are offering insight into mysteries like bird evolution and migratory patterns. Randy Dotinga, The Christian Science Monitor, "In 'The Feather Thief,' a British bird burglary exposes a hidden world," 13 Apr. 2018 But the Stikine River delta, which is accessible from Wrangell by jetboat, is a great place to spy millions of migratory shorebirds. Scott Mcmurren, Anchorage Daily News, "Alaska’s spring festivals make great getaway trips from Anchorage," 4 Mar. 2018 In winter, this is a resting spot for migratory shorebirds. Tom Stienstra, San Francisco Chronicle, "Sunday getaway to Martin Luther King Jr. Regional Shoreline," 14 Jan. 2018 In 2007 Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, situated in a major bird migratory region, became the first U.S. airport to install such a system, reports the Wall Street Journal. Cynthia Drescher, Condé Nast Traveler, "How Airports Keep Birds Away," 5 Nov. 2018 Human history is a messy, migratory affair, much too complicated to track simply via DNA. Brian Resnick, Vox, "What Elizabeth Warren’s DNA test can and can’t teach us about ancestry," 15 Oct. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'migratory.' 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 migratory

1708, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for migratory

Last Updated

9 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for migratory

The first known use of migratory was in 1708

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More Definitions for migratory



English Language Learners Definition of migratory

: moving from one place to another at different times of the year : migrating regularly


mi·​gra·​to·​ry | \ ˈmī-grə-ˌtȯr-ē How to pronounce migratory (audio) \

Kids Definition of migratory

1 : moving from one place to another migratory workers migratory birds
2 : of or relating to migration a bird's migratory route

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More from Merriam-Webster on migratory

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with migratory

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for migratory

Spanish Central: Translation of migratory

Nglish: Translation of migratory for Spanish Speakers

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