Definition of weka in English:



  • A large flightless New Zealand rail with heavily built legs and feet.

    Gallirallus australis, family Rallidae

    ‘Gangly yet beautifully coloured with its bright indigo feathers, glossy black wings, and vivid red beak and legs, the pukeko is a member of the same family as the weka.’
    • ‘I see a weka, the most common of the flightless ones, out by day whereas kiwis walk by night.’
    • ‘Ornithologists on an expedition to the Calayan Island in the Babuyan Islands in the Philippines have discovered a rare near-flightless rail, related to New Zealand's weka.’
    • ‘Bellbird, yellow-breasted tit, fantail, grey warbler and silvereye were common in all the forests and weka and robins were found in some areas.’
    • ‘We shifted inland a bit to a little farmlet and at that time there were weka everywhere in Gisborne.’



/ˈwekə/ /ˈwɛkə/


Mid 19th century from Maori, imitative of its cry.