from The Century Dictionary.
- noun In ornith.:
- noun In some systems, as those of Vigors and Swainson, the order of palmiped birds, or those which habitually swim; the swimmers.
- noun By Blyth (1849) restricted to the Lamellirostres.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.
- noun plural (Zoöl.) The swimming birds.
Sorry, no etymologies found.
In the aves, as we have seen, the type is presented in the natatores, whose name has been adopted as an appropriate term for all the corresponding groups.
The first of the aberrant groups (natatores) is remarkable for making the water the theatre of its existence, and the birds composing it are in general of comparatively large bulk.
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.