Definition of pupa
pupaeplay \-(ˌ)pē also -ˌpī\ or
: 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
pupalplay \ˈpyü-pəl\ adjective
Recent Examples of pupa from the Web
Flea eggs become flea larvae, which become flea pupae — which hang out, just waiting for an unsuspecting host.
My head had swelled up to three times its original size: a pulsating purple pupae of extreme allergic reaction.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'pupa'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of pupa
New Latin, from Latin pupa doll
First Known Use: 1770
PUPA Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of pupa for English Language Learners
biology : an insect that is in the stage of development between larva and adult
PUPA Defined for Kids
Definition of pupa for Students
: an insect (as a bee, moth, or beetle) in an intermediate inactive stage of its growth in which it is enclosed in a cocoon or case
Medical Definition of pupa
pupae\-(ˌ)pē, -ˌpī\play play or
: 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
Seen and Heard
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