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[Translation of Greek aigothēlās : aigo-, goat + -thēlās, sucker (from the belief that the bird sucked milk from goats).]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


(Animals) US and Canadian any nocturnal bird of the family Caprimulgidae, esp Caprimulgus europaeus (European nightjar): order Caprimulgiformes.. Also called (in Britain and certain other countries): nightjar
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(ˈgoʊtˌsʌk ər)

any of numerous insect-eating, mostly nocturnal birds of the family Caprimulgidae, of nearly worldwide distribution, including nightjars and nighthawks.
[1605–15; translation of Latin caprimulgus, itself translation of Greek aigothḗlas]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.goatsucker - mainly crepuscular or nocturnal nonpasserine birds with mottled greyish-brown plumage and large eyesgoatsucker - mainly crepuscular or nocturnal nonpasserine birds with mottled greyish-brown plumage and large eyes; feed on insects
caprimulgiform bird - long-winged nonpasserine birds
Caprimulgus carolinensis, chuck-will's-widow - large whippoorwill-like bird of the southern United States
Caprimulgus vociferus, whippoorwill - American nocturnal goatsucker with grey-and-white plumage
bullbat, mosquito hawk, nighthawk - mainly nocturnal North American goatsucker
Phalaenoptilus nuttallii, poorwill - goatsucker of western North America
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in classic literature ?
The evening was calm and still; -- the shrill noise of the mountain bizcacha, and the faint cry of a goatsucker, were occasionally to be heard.
Goat imagery recurs in other poems like "Goatsucker" and "The Net-Menders", which suggests that the writer found in this motif an adequate trope for tragic resilience.
"Goatsuckers, Nadders and Other Beasties" is a reference to the quirky names given to various forms of wildlife, with the "goatsucker" being the rare night-flying bird the nightjar, and the "nadder" an alternative name for the venomous adder.
It was several such southbound birds foraging for insects on a North Fork farm on a late September afternoon that completed the year's goatsucker trifecta for me.
Thursday - Goatsucker and woodcock walk, Bolton Flats and Pine Hill WMA, Lancaster, 7:30 p.m., free.
The existence of the chupacabras, also known as the goatsucker, was first surmised from livestock attacks in Puerto Rico, where dead sheep were discovered with puncture wounds, completely drained of blood.
Stealing many scenes in particular, a tiny Chupakabra, or goatsucker, named Pearl flits about, a passionate and fierce Tinkerbell with attitude and a stinger.
That led to the less than flattering nickname of "goatsucker" in many country areas.
Monster Spotter's Guide to North America is an exciting field guide to more than one hundred mythical (or are they?) and folklore monsters reputed to roam the North American continent, from the Sasquatch of the Pacific Northwest to the hideous Mexican goatsucker called El Chupacabra.
The nocturnal bird was once widely known throughout Europe as the goatsucker, because of a bizarre belief that it drank the milk of domestic livestock in the night
In many country areas the nightjar was known as the "goatsucker" for its supposed magical ability to steal milk, and the bird is now protected by countryside law and is a priority species under European law, making it illegal to kill or injure a nightjar, take its eggs or damage its nest.
Centered around extended metonymies representing human condition and situations, the poems are centered around living or mythical creatures such as carp and the chupacabras (literally, "goatsucker," a diabolical night creature).