Meaning of carnivorous in English:


Pronunciation /kɑːˈnɪv(ə)rəs/

See synonyms for carnivorous

Translate carnivorous into Spanish


  • 1(of an animal) feeding on other animals.

    ‘Most of these turtles are carnivorous, feeding on mollusks, crustaceans, aquatic insects, fish, and amphibians.’
    • ‘If a pack of carnivorous mammals were to chase a lone prey animal into the tar pits, both predators and prey would become trapped.’
    • ‘Much fossil evidence has been uncovered supporting the idea that birds evolved from a group of bipedal carnivorous dinosaurs called theropods.’
    • ‘Throughout Africa and southern Asia monitors coexist successfully with a wide range of carnivorous mammals.’
    • ‘It is the largest carnivorous mammal ever to have lived in Australia and the largest known marsupial carnivore in the world.’
    • ‘Creodonts are an extinct group of carnivorous mammals that were long thought to be the ancestors of modern Carnivora.’
    • ‘After about two weeks the eggs hatch, and minute, carnivorous larvae emerge.’
    • ‘Like herbivorous cattle fed meat, carnivorous fish are now largely vegetarians.’
    • ‘These colorful, carnivorous amphibians feed heavily on both terrestrial and aquatic insects, small invertebrates, and their eggs and larvae.’
    • ‘Some carnivorous dinosaurs routinely fed on their own species, according to an analysis of scarred fossils.’
    • ‘The carnivorous species eat small vertebrates: fish, frogs, lizards, birds, mice, or other bats.’
    • ‘Birds evolved from reptiles, probably small carnivorous dinosaurs, around 150 million years ago.’
    • ‘All cephalopods are carnivorous, feeding primarily on fish, other mollusks, Crustacea, and worms.’
    • ‘Yellow and Silver eels are primarily nocturnal carnivorous feeders, consuming insects, crustaceans, clams, worms, fish and frogs.’
    • ‘Researchers have unearthed fossil evidence of a new species of ancient crocodile that had a head like a carnivorous dinosaur and a tail like a fish.’
    • ‘These fish are carnivorous and eat a variety of small animals including insects, crustaceans, and worms.’
    • ‘For example, Heinrich's work with ravens shows that the carnivorous birds will store bits of meat only for the short term.’
    • ‘Puppies between the ages of three and six months are most susceptible to the disease, although older dogs and other carnivorous mammals can also contract distemper.’
    • ‘Several bones of carnivorous dinosaurs with tooth marks on them from other meat-eating dinosaurs have been found in Alberta, Canada.’
    • ‘Some molluscs are carnivorous, and are secondary consumers in their aquatic ecosystems.’
    meat-eating, flesh-eating, predatory, of prey, hunting, raptorial
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    1. 1.1(of a plant) able to trap and digest small animals, especially insects.
      ‘There's a botanical garden with carnivorous plants on display.’
      • ‘The Venus fly trap is an endemic carnivorous plant growing on sandy soils in the central south-eastern coastal plain of North America.’
      • ‘One of the most common pairings for a terrarium are carnivorous plants and orchids.’
      • ‘The best known of all carnivorous plants, the Venus Fly Trap is native to America but these days can be purchased in most nurseries all over the world.’
      • ‘Because the soil is acidic and infertile, some plants are carnivorous, supplementing their diets by trapping small insects.’
      • ‘I've taken some new steps in gardening today - I've started trying to grow carnivorous plants from seed.’
      • ‘Filmed in Japan, this tells the story of mad scientist Dr. Bragan who develops a giant carnivorous plant that walks like a man.’
      • ‘But there's actually nothing unnatural about it; carnivorous plants have existed on this planet for thousands of years.’
      • ‘A quirky gift for a young gardener might be a carnivorous plant.’
      • ‘Then, representing the dark side of horticulture, there are a fair few carnivorous plants that are surprisingly hardy in the garden - Sarracenias.’
      • ‘I searched in vain for a patch of sundews, the little carnivorous plants that live in just this kind of environment, so I could show off my meagre botanical knowledge.’
      • ‘The Venus Flytrap is the most famous of all carnivorous plants.’
      • ‘I always remembered the programme about carnivorous plants - I think it was on the cover of the Radio Times for that week.’
      • ‘Purportedly the world's largest collection of carnivorous plants, is open to the public.’
      • ‘The toughness of the foliage and the plethora of carnivorous plants are further evidence of a scarcity of nutrients.’
      • ‘As it turned out, it was a pretty cool garden centre, full of carnivorous plants and little neon blue fish.’
      • ‘And for further simplification, the system in this study also does not include carnivorous and parasitic plants.’
      • ‘The larvae of several fly species live and breed in the flesh-dissolving pitchers of carnivorous plants, where they feed on the organic soup and remains of the plant's victims.’
      • ‘There was also a monkey family, complete with baby, and a tropical house with birds and carnivorous plants.’


Late 16th century from Latin carnivorus, from caro, carn- ‘flesh’ + -vorus (see -vorous).