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ratite

[ rat-ahyt ]

adjective

  1. having a flat, unkeeled sternum, as an ostrich, cassowary, emu, or moa.


noun

  1. a bird having a ratite breastbone.

ratite

/ ˈrætaɪt /

adjective

  1. (of flightless birds) having a breastbone that lacks a keel for the attachment of flight muscles
  2. of or denoting the flightless birds, formerly classified as a group (the Ratitae ), that have a flat breastbone, feathers lacking vanes, and reduced wings


noun

  1. a bird, such as an ostrich, kiwi, or rhea, that belongs to this group; a flightless bird

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Word History and Origins

Origin of ratite1

1875–80; < Latin rat ( is ) raft + -ite 2

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Word History and Origins

Origin of ratite1

C19: from Latin ratis raft

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Example Sentences

Modern ratite birds seem to be the exception in their ability to handle similar pressures, he says.

Like other Ratite birds it will take to the water, and examples have been seen voluntarily swimming a wide river.

Lastly must be noted the extinct tall Ratite species of Aepyornis with its several fancy genera.

The arrangement bears a great resemblance to that of Ratite birds.

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