rap·​tor | \ ˈrap-tər How to pronounce raptor (audio) , -ˌtȯr\

Definition of raptor

1 : a carnivorous medium- to large-sized bird (such as a hawk, eagle, owl, or vulture) that has a hooked beak and large sharp talons and that feeds wholly or chiefly on meat taken by hunting or on carrion : bird of prey
2 [ New Latin -raptor (as in velociraptor) ] : a usually small-to-medium-sized predatory dinosaur (such as a velociraptor or deinonychus)

Examples of raptor in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Morris and Brown bought the property early this year with a different vision — where the raptors are modern birds rather than dinosaurs. Scott Craven, azcentral, "A summer-long goodbye: Bedrock City welcomes final visitors before taking off as Raptor Ranch," 14 June 2019 The Northern Illinois Raptor Rehabilitation and Education Center, along with local raptor trainers, will be on hand with live hawks, falcons and owls, a collection of bird bones, feathers and hunting gear. Michelle Mullins, Elgin Courier-News, "Elgin News Digest," 7 June 2019 Prosper’s nickname is also the Eagles, which makes for some mild pre-game confusion when the clubs both dash from pro-style inflatable raptor heads. Jason Gay, WSJ, "An East Coast Schlub at Friday Night Lights," 8 Nov. 2018 Killing one raptor, the report said, can result in six months in jail and a $5,000 fine. Fox News, "More than 100 dead hawks, other birds found on Northern California property," 15 Mar. 2018 In a longer 90-minute session, a second raptor is flown. Washington Post, "Tourists experience the ancient sport of falconry," 11 June 2018 In the area of the wind farm, raptors were around four times less common than in other areas. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "Turbines Kill So Many Birds They're Effectively an Apex Predator," 6 Nov. 2018 An awards show minus any red carpet raptors demanding the designers of passing gowns. Michael Andor Brodeur, BostonGlobe.com, "Highest drama," 8 June 2018 The raptor will tell you where the thermals — the uplifting air currents — are. Alan Berner, The Seattle Times, "Go, hawks: Sailplane pilots look to birds for flying tips," 23 Nov. 2018

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

1873, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for raptor

New Latin Raptores, former order name, from Latin, plural of raptor plunderer, from rapere

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Statistics for raptor

Last Updated

22 Jun 2019

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Time Traveler for raptor

The first known use of raptor was in 1873

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English Language Learners Definition of raptor

: a bird (such as an eagle or hawk) that kills and eats other animals for food
: a small or medium-sized dinosaur that ate other animals


rap·​tor | \ ˈrap-tər How to pronounce raptor (audio) \

Kids Definition of raptor

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Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with raptor

Spanish Central: Translation of raptor

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to take the place or position of

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