Dictionary.com

platypus

[ plat-i-puhs, -poos ]
/ ˈplæt ɪ pəs, -ˌpʊs /
Save This Word!

noun, plural plat·y·pus·es, plat·y·pi [plat-i-pahy]. /ˈplæt ɪˌpaɪ/.

a small, aquatic, egg-laying monotreme, Ornithorhynchus anatinus, of Australia and Tasmania, having webbed feet, a tail like that of a beaver, a sensitive bill resembling that of a duck, and, in adult males, venom-injecting spurs on the ankles of the hind limbs, used primarily for fighting with other males during the breeding season.

QUIZZES

QUIZ YOURSELF ON “ITS” VS. “IT’S”!

Apostrophes can be tricky; prove you know the difference between it’s and its in this crafty quiz!
Question 1 of 12
On the farm, the feed for chicks is significantly different from the roosters’; ______ not even comparable.
Also called duckbill, duckbilled platypus.

Origin of platypus

1790–1800; <New Latin <Greek platýpous flat-footed, equivalent to platy-platy- + -pous, adj. derivative of poúsfoot
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

British Dictionary definitions for platypus

platypus
/ (ˈplætɪpəs) /

noun plural -puses

C18: New Latin, from platy- + -pus, from Greek pous foot
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
Get Online Help For Kids!