Definition of infest in English:


See synonyms for infest

Translate infest into Spanish

transitive verb

[with object]usually be infested
  • (of insects or animals) be present (in a place or site) in large numbers, typically so as to cause damage or disease.

    ‘the house is infested with cockroaches’
    • ‘shark-infested waters’
    • ‘Fleas infest the animal (rats, but other rodents as well), and these fleas move freely over to human hosts.’
    • ‘His McGill ghetto apartment is infested with mice and, try as he might, he can't seem to get rid of them.’
    • ‘The species was believed to have been wiped out in 1918 when rats infested their home island.’
    • ‘Many houses were infested with mice, flies, and other unsavoury creatures.’
    • ‘It is essential to be aware of the species infesting your fields and to match the treatment timing to those species.’
    • ‘I had heard the media talking about rats infesting Glasgow.’
    • ‘I don't think anyone would like the idea of mice or rats in their garden but people feeding birds risk these pests infesting their homes.’
    • ‘Paint flaked off the walls, pests infested the rooms and loose wires hung in plain view.’
    • ‘These bugs may infest your bathroom, and jump out of unexpected corners of the closet, but they adhere to the policy of non-violence.’
    • ‘It is being administered medication and a mosquito net has been placed around it so that flies do not infest the wound.’
    • ‘This pest annually infests citrus in Texas, Mexico, and Central America and threatens California and Florida.’
    • ‘You might also state the level of care the apartment needs while you are gone - i.e. you might not want to come back to find it a total mess with pests infesting it because your friend never cleaned.’
    • ‘What's with all the hunters infesting these places lately?’
    • ‘He paved over our yard, because he didn't want ants infesting the house.’
    • ‘She hated bugs and wouldn't be caught dead having to do all that walking in the hot bug infested woods.’
    • ‘It is crumbling worldwide like a white ant infested edifice along with its credibility.’
    • ‘Our landlord had neglected to provide screens, and I was unable to open the windows, lest flies infest the house.’
    • ‘If lice infest the eyebrows or eyelashes, the eyes may also become inflamed.’
    • ‘Instead they are rat infested and neglected while rich people don't have to pay university fees.’
    • ‘The hospitals were dirty, smelly, rat infested, and lacked basic requirements.’
    overrun, spread through, take over, overspread, swarm over, crawl over, run riot over
    overrun, swarming, teeming, crawling, bristling, alive, ridden, infiltrated, permeated
    View synonyms



/inˈfest/ /ɪnˈfɛst/


Late Middle English (in the sense ‘torment, harass’): from French infester or Latin infestare ‘assail’, from infestus ‘hostile’. The current sense dates from the mid 16th century.