Definition of rectrices in English:


plural nounrectrix/ˈrektriks/ /ˈrɛktrɪks/

  • The larger feathers in a bird's tail, used for steering in flight.

    Compare with remiges

    ‘I plucked the outer right rectrix (tail feather), thereby inducing the growth of a replacement.’
    • ‘We also removed the central rectrix from the right side of the tail of each adult to determine feather growth rate.’
    • ‘Most birds showed signs of moderate to heavy wear of the secondary coverts and rectrices.’
    • ‘That scheduling results in little overlap between molt of rectrices and outer primaries, both of which are important to landing.’
    • ‘Age determination was based on the shape of rectrices.’
    plume, quill



/ˈrekˌtrəsēz/ /ˈrɛkˌtrəsiz/


Mid 18th century from Latin, feminine plural of rector ‘ruler’ (see rector).