ratite

[ rat-ahyt ]
/ ˈræt aɪt /
|

adjective

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

noun

a bird having a ratite breastbone.

Nearby words

  1. rationalize,
  2. rationally,
  3. rationing,
  4. rations,
  5. ratisbon,
  6. ratline,
  7. rato,
  8. ratoon,
  9. ratpack,
  10. rats

Origin of ratite

1875–80; < Latin rat(is) raft + -ite2

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for ratite



British Dictionary definitions for ratite

ratite

/ (ˈrætaɪt) /

adjective

(of flightless birds) having a breastbone that lacks a keel for the attachment of flight muscles
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

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

Word Origin for ratite

C19: from Latin ratis raft

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