Let's Compare Buzzard and Vulture


A buzzard is one of several large birds, but there are a number of meanings as detailed below.

buzzard n 1: common in South America and Central America and southern United States [syn: {turkey buzzard}, {turkey vulture}, {Cathartes aura}] 2: the common European short-winged hawk [syn: {Buteo buteo}]

Buzzard \Buz"zard\ (b[u^]z"z[~e]rd), n.[O.E. busard, bosard, F. busard, fr. buse, L. buteo, a kind of falcon or hawk.] [1913 Webster] 1. (Zo["o]l.) A bird of prey of the Hawk family, belonging to the genus {Buteo} and related genera. [1913 Webster] 2. (Zo["o]l.) In the United States, a term used for the {turkey vulture} ({Cathartes aura}), and sometimes indiscriminately to any vulture. [PJC] Note: The {Buteo vulgaris} is the common buzzard of Europe. The American species (of which the most common are {Buteo borealis}, {Buteo Pennsylvanicus}, and {Buteo lineatus}) are usually called hen hawks. -- The rough-legged buzzard, or bee hawk, of Europe ({Pernis apivorus}) feeds on bees and their larv[ae], with other insects, and reptiles. -- The moor buzzard of Europe is {Circus [ae]ruginosus}. See {Turkey buzzard}, and {Carrion buzzard}. [1913 Webster] {Bald buzzard}, the fishhawk or osprey. See {Fishhawk}. [1913 Webster] 2. A blockhead; a dunce. [1913 Webster] It is common, to a proverb, to call one who can not be taught, or who continues obstinately ignorant, a buzzard. --Goldsmith. [1913 Webster]

Buzzard \Buz"zard\, a. Senseless; stupid. [R. & Obs.] --Milton. [1913 Webster]


Vulture is the name given to two groups of convergently evolved scavenging birds, the New World Vultures including the well-known Californian and Andean Condors, and the Old World Vultures including the birds which are seen scavenging on carcasses of dead animals on African plains.

vulture n 1: any of various large diurnal birds of prey having naked heads and weak claws and feeding chiefly on carrion 2: someone who attacks in search of booty [syn: {marauder}, {predator}, {piranha}]

19 Moby Thesaurus words for "vulture": blackmailer, bloodsucker, extortionist, filch, harpy, heist, hook, leech, lift, pinch, predator, profiteer, racketeer, raptor, shakedown artist, shark, snitch, swipe, vampire

Vulture \Vul"ture\ (?; 135), n. [OE. vultur, L. vultur: cf. OF. voltour, F. vautour.] (Zo["o]l.) Any one of numerous species of rapacious birds belonging to {Vultur}, {Cathartes}, {Catharista}, and various other genera of the family {Vulturid[ae]}. [1913 Webster] Note: In most of the species the head and neck are naked or nearly so. They feed chiefly on carrion. The condor, king vulture, turkey buzzard, and black vulture ({Catharista atrata}) are well known American species. The griffin, lammergeir, and Pharaoh's chicken, or Egyptian vulture, are common Old World vultures. [1913 Webster]

Vulture (1.) Heb. da'ah (Lev. 11:14). In the parallel passage (Deut. 14:13) the Hebrew word used is _ra'ah_, rendered "glede;" LXX., "gups;" Vulg., "milvus." A species of ravenous bird, distinguished for its rapid flight. "When used without the epithet 'red,' the name is commonly confined to the black kite. The habits of the bird bear out the allusion in Isa. 34:15, for it is, excepting during the winter three months, so numerous everywhere in Palestine as to be almost gregarious." (See {EAGLE}.) (2.) In Job 28:7 the Heb. 'ayyah is thus rendered. The word denotes a clamorous and a keen-sighted bird of prey. In Lev. 11:14 and Deut. 14:13 it is rendered "kite" (q.v.).

Data Sources:

  • buzzard: WordNet (r) 2.0
  • buzzard: The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.44
  • buzzard: The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.44
  • vulture: WordNet (r) 2.0
  • vulture: Moby Thesaurus II by Grady Ward, 1.0
  • vulture: The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.44
  • vulture: Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary

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