Meaning of yapok in English:


Pronunciation /ˈjapɒk/


  • A semiaquatic carnivorous opossum with dark-banded grey fur and webbed hind feet, native to tropical America.

    Also called water opossum

    Chironectes minimus, family Didelphidae

    ‘It is shared by the American or Virginian opossum; the rare water opossum, or yapok of northern South America and the eastern native cat of Australia.’
    • ‘The gestation periods of the American opossum, also called the Virginian Opossum, the rare water opossum or yapok of central and northern South America and the eastern native cat of Australia are all normally 12-13 days but can be as short as eight days.’
    • ‘Marsupials live underground, on land, in trees (tree kangaroos and koalas), and in water (yapok), and inhabit rainforests, deserts, and temperate regions.’
    • ‘Over the 3 years of the series’ life, Leigh-Pemberton covered such diverse creatures as kangaroos, yapoks, banana arts, brindled gnus, wapiti and chamois (the latter gaining much fame as a highly effective window-cleaner)’
    • ‘The yapoks’ diet has not been studied extensively, but they are believed to be both insectivorous and omnivorous, feeding opportunistically on animals such as cray-fish.’
    • ‘Rather, the waitoreki might live in burrows like those which the platypus is known to construct in banks along streams and ponds and which, contrary to those of the yapok, open below water level.’
    • ‘The yapok is a long-legged opossum with a relatively broad snout, and a long, almost hairless, scaly tail except at its base.’
    • ‘South America, in particular, has a host of species, from the dwarf fat-tailed mouse opposum to the yapok, an aquatic marsupial.’
    • ‘Over the years, she raises twenty-seven tigers and cares for a variety of young animals including yapoks, marmosets, gorillas, chimpanzees, deer, ring-tailed lemurs, lions, jaguars, and leopards.’
    • ‘The male yapok has a ventral pouch protecting the scrotum.’
    • ‘In general terms, the yapok can be thought of as a sort of marsupial otter.’
    • ‘Natural History From aardwolves and bandicoots to yapoks and zorillas, Ernest P. Walker's Mammals of the World is the most comprehensive - the pre-eminent - reference work on mammals.’
    • ‘They produce a litter of one to five young yapoks at a time, which are born in the nest two weeks after they mate.’
    • ‘When the yapok is building its nest, it carries leaves rolled up in its tail to line its home and make it cozy.’
    • ‘Many species are fully terrestrial, many are arboreal, and at least one species, yapoks, is semi-aquatic.’
    • ‘When a mother yapok dives underwater, her baby is saved from drowning by a waterproof pouch.’


Early 19th century from Oyapock, the name of a north Brazilian river.