mi·​gra·​to·​ry | \ ˈmī-grə-ˌtȯr-ē \

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

But migratory species still spend a lot of time in Africa and therefore around African pathogens. Asher Elbein, New York Times, "Some Birds Are Better Off With Weak Immune Systems," 25 June 2018 The developments are alarming ecologists who have spent years studying the migratory birds, rare plants, insects and mammals that call the DMZ home. Andrew Jeong, WSJ, "If You Think North Korea Is a Wild Place, Check Out the DMZ," 3 Dec. 2018 Former environment secretary Jose Luis Luege said the government is already draining Lake Nabor Carrillo, a shallow 2,265 acres (917 hectare) lake that provides a major habitat for migratory birds. Mark Stevenson, Fox News, "Protesters: New Mexico City airport will hurt environment," 23 Aug. 2018 The riparian habitat, along with nearby meadows and oak woodlands, provides range for a local deer herd, along with migratory songbirds. Tom Stienstra, San Francisco Chronicle, "Hike, bike or camp: Monte Bello can set you free," 1 Mar. 2018 The United States has migratory bird treaties with Canada, Mexico, Russia and Japan. Jordyn Hermani, Indianapolis Star, "Black vultures are eating cows alive. But it's difficult to legally kill the birds.," 13 July 2018 As for its regular feathered inhabitants, the Coastside is blessed with migratory shorebirds, an abundance of gulls, breeding warblers, wintering sparrows, and a richness of raptors. Jill K. Robinson, SFChronicle.com, "5 places to spot birds in Half Moon Bay," 12 July 2018 Fisher said Mary Lee’s tracks follow a predictable migratory loop. Tommy Rowan, Philly.com, "Irrational shark fear you can't escape at the Jersey Shore," 5 July 2018 And nowhere else in the world have scientists found so many shorebirds carrying diverse flu strains as when red knots, ruddy turnstones and other species make their migratory stopover at this bay nestled between New Jersey and Delaware. Washington Post, "Bird flu hot spot: Scientists track virus in huge migration," 28 June 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

22 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for migratory

The first known use of migratory was in 1708

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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 \

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

Comments on migratory

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someone who never drinks alcohol

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