Definition of ratite
: a bird with a flat breastbone; especially : any of various mostly flightless birds (such as an ostrich, rhea, emu, moa, or kiwi) with small or rudimentary wings and no keel on the sternum that are probably of polyphyletic origin and are assigned to a number of different orders
Origin and Etymology of ratite
ultimately from Latin ratitus marked with the figure of a raft, from ratis raft
First Known Use: 1874
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