[zhah-suh-nah, jah-]


any of several tropical, ploverlike, aquatic birds of the family Jacanidae, most of them having extremely long toes and claws for walking on floating water plants.

Origin of jaçana

1640–50; < Portuguese jaçanã < Tupi jasaná
Also called lily-trotter.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for jacana

Historical Examples of jacana

  • The most singular character of the jacana is its long toes and claws.

  • There are several species of “jacana” in South America, and also some species in the tropical countries of the East.

  • The Jacana belongs to a small family of birds with representatives throughout the tropics.

British Dictionary definitions for jacana



any bird of the family Jacanidae, of tropical and subtropical marshy regions, having long legs and very long toes that enable walking on floating plants: order CharadriiformesAlso called: lily-trotter

Word Origin for jaçana

C18: from Portuguese jaçanã, from Tupi-Guarani jasaná
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012