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[pri-dey-shuh n]
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  1. depredation; plundering.
  2. act of plundering or robbing.
  3. predatory behavior.
  4. a relation between animals in which one organism captures and feeds on others.
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Origin of predation

1425–75; late Middle English < Latin praedātiōn- (stem of praedātiō) a taking of booty, plundering, equivalent to praedāt(us), past participle of praedārī to plunder, catch (see predator) + -iōn-
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for predation


  1. a relationship between two species of animal in a community, in which one (the predator) hunts, kills, and eats the other (the prey)
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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

Word Origin and History for predation


late 15c., "act of plundering or pillaging," from Latin praedationem (nominative praedatio) "a plundering, act of taking booty," from praedari "to rob, to plunder," from praeda "plunder, booty, prey" (see prey (n.)). Zoological sense recorded from 1907.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper