predator

A predator is an animal that eats other animals — or people or companies who act like they do. Lions are predators, but so are pickpockets and some giant corporations.

The word predator started out referring to insects that ate other insects, but has grown to include any animal that eats another animal. We humans like to think of ourselves as the top of the food chain, but scary movies love to disagree, like in the 1987 movie Predator, where creepy aliens try to kill and eat us. Predators don't have to kill and eat you, though; they can also just take your stuff. It's from the Latin word praedator, which means "plunderer," which is more like something a pirate would do.

Definitions of predator
  1. noun
    any animal that lives by preying on other animals
    synonyms: predatory animal
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    types:
    carnivore
    any animal that feeds on flesh
    type of:
    animal, animate being, beast, brute, creature, fauna
    a living organism characterized by voluntary movement
  2. noun
    someone who attacks in search of booty
    synonyms: marauder, piranha, vulture
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    types:
    moss-trooper
    a marauder and plunderer (originally operating in the bogs between England and Scotland)
    type of:
    aggressor, assailant, assaulter, attacker
    someone who attacks
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