road·​kill | \ ˈrōd-ˌkil How to pronounce roadkill (audio) \

Definition of roadkill

1 : the remains of an animal that has been killed on a road by a motor vehicle
2 : one that falls victim to intense competition political roadkill

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Other Words from roadkill

road-killed \ ˈrōd-​ˌkild How to pronounce roadkill (audio) \ adjective

Examples of roadkill in a Sentence

There is a lot of roadkill along the highway.
Recent Examples on the Web The state will notify anybody whose roadkill deer has the disease. Matt Vasilogambros, Anchorage Daily News, "Roadkill moose fed Alaska families for years. Then came COVID-19.," 25 Dec. 2020 The state will notify anybody whose roadkill deer has the disease. Matt Vasilogambros, USA TODAY, "Roadkill moose fed Alaska families for years. Then COVID-19 came.," 17 Dec. 2020 To get to the other side, of course — without the risk of becoming roadkill. Paul Walsh, Star Tribune, "Roadkill remedy: MnDOT tunnel now offers deer passage under highway," 13 Dec. 2020 Most patients are raptors, vultures and corvids hit by vehicles while scavenging roadkill. oregonlive, "Battered bald eagle recovers at Klamath Falls wildlife rescue after flying into a moving truck," 6 Dec. 2020 Since no one shot a deer, the park staff finds a roadkill deer for the class to dress and butcher. Phil Bourjaily, Field & Stream, "Meet the New Faces of Deer Hunting," 16 Nov. 2020 In the first four weeks of the stay-at-home order, the daily rate of roadkill dropped by about 20 percent. Theresa Machemer, Smithsonian Magazine, "Roadkill Reduced During Lockdowns, but Traffic Is Increasing Again," 1 July 2020 Still, the animal’s reputation as roadkill remains a barrier to its acceptance, however adorned with cayenne and allspice. Ligaya Mishan, New York Times, "When Invasive Species Become the Meal," 2 Oct. 2020 Alligators bask along a two-lane route and often end up as roadkill. Rick Rojas, New York Times, "After Storms, They Built Higher. They Dread Doing It Again.," 23 Sep. 2020

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

1946, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for roadkill

Time Traveler

The first known use of roadkill was in 1946

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Statistics for roadkill

Last Updated

9 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Roadkill.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for roadkill


How to pronounce roadkill (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of roadkill

: animals that have been killed by being hit by cars and other vehicles

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