[ sem-ee-par-uh-sit-ik, sem-ahy- ]
/ ˌsɛm iˌpær əˈsɪt ɪk, ˌsɛm aɪ- /


Biology. commonly parasitic but also capable of living on dead or decaying animal matter.
Botany. partly parasitic and partly photosynthetic.

Nearby words

  1. semioviparous,
  2. semipalatinsk,
  3. semipalmate,
  4. semipalmated plover,
  5. semipalmated sandpiper,
  6. semipermanent,
  7. semipermeable,
  8. semiplastic,
  9. semipolar bond,
  10. semipolitical

Origin of semiparasitic

First recorded in 1875–80; semi- + parasitic

Related formssem·i·par·a·site [sem-ee-par-uh-sahyt, sem-ahy-] /ˌsɛm iˈpær əˌsaɪt, ˌsɛm aɪ-/, nounsem·i·par·a·sit·ism [sem-ee-par-uh-sahy-tiz-uh m, sem-ahy-] /ˌsɛm iˈpær əˌsaɪ tɪz əm, ˌsɛm aɪ-/, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for semiparasitic

British Dictionary definitions for semiparasitic


/ (ˌsɛmɪˌpærəˈsɪtɪk) /


(of plants, such as mistletoe) obtaining some food from a host but undergoing photosynthesis at the same time
(of bacteria or fungi) usually parasitic but capable of living as a saprotroph
Derived Formssemiparasite (ˌsɛmɪˈpærəsaɪt), nounsemiparasitism (ˌsɛmɪˈpærəsɪˌtɪzəm), noun

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