Prairie chicken
Prairie Prai"rie, n. [F., an extensive meadow, OF. praerie, LL. prataria, fr. L. pratum a meadow.] 1. An extensive tract of level or rolling land, destitute of trees, covered with coarse grass, and usually characterized by a deep, fertile soil. They abound throughout the Mississippi valley, between the Alleghanies and the Rocky mountains. [1913 Webster]

From the forests and the prairies, From the great lakes of the northland. --Longfellow. [1913 Webster]

2. A meadow or tract of grass; especially, a so called natural meadow. [1913 Webster]

{Prairie chicken} (Zo["o]l.), any American grouse of the genus {Tympanuchus}, especially {Tympanuchus Americanus} (formerly {Tympanuchus cupido}), which inhabits the prairies of the central United States. Applied also to the sharp-tailed grouse.

{Prairie clover} (Bot.), any plant of the leguminous genus {Petalostemon}, having small rosy or white flowers in dense terminal heads or spikes. Several species occur in the prairies of the United States.

{Prairie dock} (Bot.), a coarse composite plant ({Silphium terebinthaceum}) with large rough leaves and yellow flowers, found in the Western prairies.

{Prairie dog} (Zo["o]l.), a small American rodent ({Cynomys Ludovicianus}) allied to the marmots. It inhabits the plains west of the Mississippi. The prairie dogs burrow in the ground in large warrens, and have a sharp bark like that of a dog. Called also {prairie marmot}.

{Prairie grouse}. Same as {Prairie chicken}, above.

{Prairie hare} (Zo["o]l.), a large long-eared Western hare ({Lepus campestris}). See {Jack rabbit}, under 2d {Jack}.

{Prairie hawk}, {Prairie falcon} (Zo["o]l.), a falcon of Western North America ({Falco Mexicanus}). The upper parts are brown. The tail has transverse bands of white; the under parts, longitudinal streaks and spots of brown.

{Prairie hen}. (Zo["o]l.) Same as {Prairie chicken}, above.

{Prairie itch} (Med.), an affection of the skin attended with intense itching, which is observed in the Northern and Western United States; -- also called {swamp itch}, {winter itch}.

{Prairie marmot}. (Zo["o]l.) Same as {Prairie dog}, above.

{Prairie mole} (Zo["o]l.), a large American mole ({Scalops argentatus}), native of the Western prairies.

{Prairie pigeon}, {Prairie plover}, or {Prairie snipe} (Zo["o]l.), the upland plover. See {Plover}, n., 2.

{Prairie rattlesnake} (Zo["o]l.), the massasauga.

{Prairie snake} (Zo["o]l.), a large harmless American snake ({Masticophis flavigularis}). It is pale yellow, tinged with brown above.

{Prairie squirrel} (Zo["o]l.), any American ground squirrel of the genus {Spermophilus}, inhabiting prairies; -- called also {gopher}.

{Prairie turnip} (Bot.), the edible turnip-shaped farinaceous root of a leguminous plant ({Psoralea esculenta}) of the Upper Missouri region; also, the plant itself. Called also {pomme blanche}, and {pomme de prairie}.

{Prairie warbler} (Zo["o]l.), a bright-colored American warbler ({Dendroica discolor}). The back is olive yellow, with a group of reddish spots in the middle; the under parts and the parts around the eyes are bright yellow; the sides of the throat and spots along the sides, black; three outer tail feathers partly white.

{Prairie wolf}. (Zo["o]l.) See {Coyote}. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Prairie Chicken — refers to several birds in the genus Tympanuchus :*Greater Prairie Chicken ( Tympanuchus cupido ) **Attwater s Prairie Chicken ( Tympanuchus cupido attwateri ) **Heath Hen ( Tympanuchus cupido cupido ) ** Tympanuchus cupido pinnatus *Lesser… …   Wikipedia

  • prairie chicken — ☆ prairie chicken n. any of a genus (Tympanuchus) of large, brown and white, henlike grouse with a short, rounded tail, found on the North American prairies and along the coast of the Gulf of Mexico: also prairie hen …   English World dictionary

  • prairie chicken — 1. either of two North American gallinaceous birds of western prairies, Tympanuchus cupido (greater prairie chicken), or T. pallidicinctus (lesser prairie chicken), having rufous, brown, black, and white plumage. 2. See sharp tailed grouse. Also… …   Universalium

  • prairie chicken — noun brown mottled North American grouse of western prairies • Syn: ↑prairie grouse, ↑prairie fowl • Hypernyms: ↑grouse • Hyponyms: ↑greater prairie chicken, ↑Tympanuchus cupido, ↑ …   Useful english dictionary

  • prairie chicken — noun Either of two species of flightless bird of the genus Tympanuchus, native to the prairies of North America, the greater and lesser prairie chickens …   Wiktionary

  • prairie chicken — (also prairie hen) noun a large North American grouse found on the prairies. [Genus Tympanuchus: two species.] …   English new terms dictionary

  • prairie chicken — /prɛəri ˈtʃɪkən/ (say prairree chikuhn) noun a North American gallinaceous bird, Tympanuchus cupido, inhabiting prairies and valued as game. Also, prairie hen …   Australian English dictionary

  • prairie chicken — noun Date: 1691 a grouse (Tympanuchus cupido) chiefly of the tallgrass prairies of the central United States with the male having yellowish orange neck sacs which are inflated during courtship displays; also a closely related smaller grouse (T.… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • prairie chicken — prai′rie chick en n. orn either of two gallinaceous birds of central North American grasslands, Tympanuchus cupido or T. pallidicinctus, of the grouse subfamily, noted for the booming sounds made by males during courtship displays • Etymology:… …   From formal English to slang

  • prairie-chicken — …   Useful english dictionary

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