from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. An Old World shrike (Lanius senator) having black and white plumage with a reddish crown.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Lanius senator, a medium-sized migratory passerine bird of the shrike family.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Any one of several species of Asiatic singing birds belonging to the genera Ianthia and Larvivora. They are closely allied to the European robin. The males are usually bright blue above, and more or less red or rufous beneath.
  • n. A European shrike (Enneoctonus rufus). In the male the head and nape are rufous red; the back, wings, and tail are black, varied with white.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The red-backed shrike or butcher-bird of Africa and Europe, Laniusrufus. Also called L. auriculatus and by other names.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • I saw many other birds in my month on Fair Isle, far rarer ones: I found a woodchat shrike, a streaky youngster with a grownup hooked bill, that should have been on the other side of Europe; I became adept at listening for the soft calls of common rosefinches, the blandest of birds with the beadiest of eyes; I knew where a buff-breasted sandpiper blown from North America roosted.

    A Year on the Wing

  • The great grey shrike, the red-backed shrike, and the woodchat shrike, are the three species of the family occurring in Great Britain; the red-backed shrike is the only tolerably common one, arriving in this country late in April, and quitting it in September.

    Country Walks of a Naturalist with His Children


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