pupa

noun

pu·​pa ˈpyü-pə How to pronounce pupa (audio)
plural pupae ˈpyü-(ˌ)pē How to pronounce pupa (audio)
 also  -ˌpī
or pupas
: an intermediate usually quiescent stage of a metamorphic insect (such as a bee, moth, or beetle) that occurs between the larva and the imago, is usually enclosed in a cocoon or protective covering, and undergoes internal changes by which larval structures are replaced by those typical of the imago
pupal adjective

Examples of pupa in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Mosquito pupae mill about inside a shallow tray full of water. Stephanie Nolen and Eleanor Lutz. Photography and Video By Federico Rios Escobar For The New York Times. Eleanor Lutz, New York Times, 29 Sep. 2023 But as larvae and pupae, these mosquitoes love living in very polluted environments, like septic water, retention and detention ponds, and anywhere with sewer runoff. Ritu Prasad, CNN, 12 Sep. 2023 Mosquitoes tend to reside close to standing water, where their larvae and pupae develop. USA TODAY, 29 May 2023 Mosquitoes dig water because their larvae (baby mosquitoes) and pupae (teenage mosquitoes) live in mostly still water, meaning the water has little to no movement, the CDC explains. Korin Miller, SELF, 12 July 2023 Worker bees stuff the cell with brood food, a combination of honey and protein-rich pollen designed to nurture the developing pupa, and cap it with wax until the bee is ready to emerge. Time, 3 July 2023 This easy-to-use topical solution not only effectively kills and repels fleas and ticks but also prevents the development of flea eggs, larvae, and pupae. Amber Smith, Discover Magazine, 24 June 2023 At a certain point, with no rain, the pupae expire. Elizabeth Kolbert, The New Yorker, 13 Mar. 2023 In the larva stage, mosquitoes are aquatic and then develop into pupae in as little as five days but often longer, sometimes even over the course of the winter. USA TODAY, 29 May 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'pupa.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

New Latin, from Latin pupa doll

First Known Use

1770, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of pupa was in 1770

Dictionary Entries Near pupa

Cite this Entry

“Pupa.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pupa. Accessed 3 Mar. 2024.

Kids Definition

pupa

noun
pu·​pa ˈpyü-pə How to pronounce pupa (audio)
plural pupae -pē How to pronounce pupa (audio)
-ˌpī
or pupas
: a stage of an insect (as a bee, moth, or beetle) having complete metamorphosis that occurs between the larva and the adult, is usually enclosed in a cocoon or case, and goes through changes inside by which structures of the larva are replaced by those of the adult
pupal adjective

Medical Definition

pupa

noun
pu·​pa ˈpyü-pə How to pronounce pupa (audio)
plural pupae -(ˌ)pē How to pronounce pupa (audio) -ˌpī How to pronounce pupa (audio) or pupas
: an intermediate usually quiescent stage of an insect that occurs between the larva and the imago in forms (as a bee, moth, or beetle) which undergo complete metamorphosis and that is characterized by internal changes by which larval structures are replaced by those typical of the imago
pupal adjective
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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