from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n.pl. See grallæ.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- An order or other large group of wading birds, synonymous with Grallæ in any of its senses.
- In Bonaparte's dichotomous physiological classification of birds, a subclass of Aves (the other subclass being called Insessores), containing those birds the young of which are hatched clothed and able to run about.
Sorry, no etymologies found.
What seems plainer than that the long toes of grallatores are formed for walking over swamps and floating plants, yet the water-hen is nearly as aquatic as the coot; and the landrail nearly as terrestrial as the quail or partridge.
It woke the grallatores of the swamp -- the qua-bird, the curlews, and the tall blue herons -- who screamed in concert.
Of the thirty species of grallatores the most remarkable is the emu.
The second (grallatores) are long-limbed and long-billed, that they may wade and pick up their subsistence in the shallows and marshes in which they chiefly live.
In the conirostres are the perfections which belong to the incessores as an order, with the conspicuous external feature of a comparatively small notch in their bills; in the dentirostres, the notch is strong and toothlike, (hence the name of the tribe) assimilating them to the raptores; the fissirostres come into analogy with the natatores in the slight development of their feet and their great powers of flight; the tenuirostres have the small mouths and long soft bills of the grallatores.
Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.