- any of various burrowing rodents of the squirrel family, especially of the genus Spermophilus (or Citellus), sometimes sufficiently numerous to do much damage to crops, as the ground squirrels and susliks.
Origin of spermophile
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for spermophile
Harris saw a Spermophile, of what species none of us could tell.Audubon and his Journals, Vol. 2
Maria R. Audubon
- any of various North American ground squirrels of the genera Citellus, Spermophilopsis, etc, regarded as pests in many regions
C19: from sperm (at) o- + -phile, on the model of New Latin spermophilus a seed-lover