[ mahy-gruh-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee ]
/ ˈmaɪ grəˌtɔr i, -ˌtoʊr i /


periodically migrating: a migratory species; migratory workers.
pertaining to a migration:migratory movements of birds.
roving; nomadic; wandering.
Sometimes mi·gra·tive.

Origin of migratory

First recorded in 1745–55; migrate + -ory1

Related forms

non·mi·gra·to·ry, adjectivepre·mi·gra·to·ry, adjectiveun·mi·gra·tive, adjectiveun·mi·gra·to·ry, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for migratory

British Dictionary definitions for migratory


/ (ˈmaɪɡrətərɪ, -trɪ) /


of, relating to, or characterized by migration
nomadic; itinerant
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

Science definitions for migratory


[ mīgrə-tôr′ē ]

Traveling from one place to another at regular times of year, often over long distances. Salmon, whales, and swallows are all migratory animals.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.