AskDefine | Define burrow

Dictionary Definition

burrow n : a hole in the ground made by an animal for shelter [syn: tunnel] v : move through by or as by digging; "burrow through the forest" [syn: tunnel]

User Contributed Dictionary




  1. A tunnel or hole, often as dug by a small creature.



  1. To dig a tunnel or hole.


to dig a hole
  • Finnish: kaivaa (1)
  • Spanish: socavar

Extensive Definition

A burrow is a hole or tunnel dug into the ground by an animal to create a space suitable for habitation, temporary refuge, or as a byproduct of locomotion. Burrows provide a form of shelter against predation and exposure to the elements, so the burrowing way of life is quite popular among the animals. Burrows are also commonly preserved in the fossil record as a type of trace fossil.
A wide variety of animals construct or use burrows in many different types of substrate. Mammals are perhaps most well-known for burrowing, especially Insectivora like the voracious mole, and rodents like the prolific gopher and groundhog. The rabbit, a member of the family Lagomorpha, is a well-known burrower. There are estimations that a single groundhog burrow occupies a full cubic meter, displacing 320 kilograms of dirt. Even Carnivora like the meerkat and Marsupials like the kangaroo mouse are burrowers.
Other examples of burrowing animals include a number of fish, amphibians, reptiles (including small dinosaurs), and birds, as well as numerous invertebrates including insects, spiders, sea urchins, clams and worms.
Burrows can be constructed into a wide variety of substrates. Kangaroo mice construct burrows in fine sand. Termites construct burrows in wood. Some sea urchins and clams can burrow into rock. Burrows can also range in complexity from a simple tube a few centimeters long to a complex network of interconnecting tunnels and chambers hundreds or thousands of meters in total length, such as a well-developed rabbit warren.


burrow in Simple English: burrow
burrow in German: Tierbau
burrow in Spanish: Madriguera
burrow in Dutch: Graafgang

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

abri, anchor, antre, be incognito, beat the bushes, billet at, bivouac, bore, bunker, camp, cave, cavern, colonize, come to anchor, couch, cove, covert, croodle, cuddle, delve, den, dig, dig out, dike, disappear, domesticate, dredge, drill, drive, drop anchor, drop from sight, dugout, earth, ensconce, establish residence, excavate, excavation, explore, forage, form, foxhole, frisk, furrow, go into hiding, go through, go to ground, go underground, gouge, gouge out, groove, grot, grotto, grub, hide, hide away, hide out, hive, hole, hole up, hunt, inhabit, keep house, lair, lie, lie close, lie doggo, lie hid, lie low, lie snug, live at, locate, lodge, look around, look round, look through, lower, masquerade, mew, mine, moor, move, nest, nestle, nose around, nuzzle, park, people, perch, play peekaboo, poke, poke around, populate, pry, quarry, relocate, remain anonymous, research, reside, retire from sight, roost, root, run, sap, scoop, scoop out, scrabble, scrape, scratch, search, search through, set up housekeeping, set up shop, settle, settle down, sewer, shovel, sink, sit down, sit tight, smell around, snug, spade, squat, stand, stay at, stay in hiding, strike root, subterrane, subway, take cover, take residence at, take root, take up residence, trench, trough, tunnel, warren, wear a mask
Privacy Policy, About Us, Terms and Conditions, Contact Us
Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2
Material from Wikipedia, Wiktionary, Dict
Valid HTML 4.01 Strict, Valid CSS Level 2.1