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  • WordNet 3.6
    • n ovipositor egg-laying tubular structure at the end of the abdomen in many female insects and some fishes
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • n Ovipositor (Zoöl) The organ with which many insects and some other animals deposit their eggs. Some ichneumon files have a long ovipositor fitted to pierce the eggs or larvæ of other insects, in order to lay their own eggs within the same.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n ovipositor The ovipositing organ with which many (especially hymenopterous, orthopterous, coleopterous, and dipterous) insects are provided, and by means of which they place their eggs in a position suitable for development. It forms the end of the abdomen, several of the rings or somites of which are specially modified for this purpose. It normally or usually consists of three pairs of rhabdites, the outer two pairs of which incase or sheathe the inner pair, and form an extensile tube, of very variable size and shape in different insects. It is sometimes longer than the body of the insect. In the terebrant hymenopters the ovipositor forms a saw or an auger (serra or terebra). In the aculeate hymenopters, as bees and wasps, the ovipositor is the sting or aculeus. In orthopters it is often conspicuous, as seen in the cut. Also called oviscapt. See also cuts under canker-worm and Cecidomyia.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Ovipositor ō-vi-poz′i-tor the organ at the extremity of the abdomen of many insects, by which the eggs are deposited
    • ***


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
L. ovum, an egg + positor, a placer, fr. ponere, to place
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
L. ovum, egg, positorponĕre, to place.


In literature:

To sum up, the ovipositor when at rest goes round the abdomen.
"The Mason-bees" by J. Henri Fabre
On the day after that, the legs do not move, but the antennae, the palpi and the ovipositor continue to flutter actively.
"Bramble-bees and Others" by J. Henri Fabre
Their ovipositor extended telescope fashion, they heap egg upon egg.
"The Life of the Fly" by J. Henri Fabre
The ovipositor bends at a right angle and dives into the junction of the beak, straight down to the root.
"The Wonders of Instinct" by J. H. Fabre
The ovipositor of female has the edges quite smooth beneath.
"Journals Of Two Expeditions Of Discovery In North-West And Western Australia, Vol. 2 (of 2)" by George Grey
The ovipositor is then withdrawn with methodical deliberation, in order that it may not be strained or bent.
"Social Life in the Insect World" by J. H. Fabre
The ovipositor of the locust is not long and sword-like.
"The Insect Folk" by Margaret Warner Morley
In all these insects the rudiments of the wings, legs, and even of the ovipositor of the adult exist in the young larva.
"Our Common Insects" by Alpheus Spring Packard
By means of a saw-like ovipositor the female lays her eggs in the branches of trees.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 6, Slice 3" by Various
Ovipositor about an inch and a half in length, polished and straight like a needle.
"My First Summer in the Sierra" by John Muir
Many of these have the ovipositor greatly lengthened, and projecting like a very slender needle from the extremity of the abdomen.
"The Romance of Natural History, Second Series" by Philip Henry Gosse
In the females of many insects the ovipositor is modified in the most complex manner for the safe placing of the eggs.
"The Descent of Man and Selection in Relation to Sex, Vol. I (1st edition)" by Charles Darwin
Describe the ovipositors and the probable method of their use.
"A Guide for the Study of Animals" by Worrallo Whitney
The female lays her eggs in a slit made by means of her "saw-like" ovipositor in the leaf or fruit of a tree.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 8, Slice 10" by Various
OVIPOSITOR of insects, i.
"The Descent of Man and Selection in Relation to Sex" by Charles Darwin
The actual wound made by the ovipositor heals up at once.
"Disease in Plants" by H. Marshall Ward
They have chiefly been studied in the female, and form the sting and ovipositor, organs peculiar to this sex.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 13, Slice 4" by Various
The female, by means of her serrated ovipositor, lays her eggs in slits cut in the twigs of plants.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 13, Slice 3" by Various
They all have membranous wings, and all the females have either a saw, an ovipositor or a sting at the tip of the abdomen.
"Book of Monsters" by David Fairchild and Marian Hubbard (Bell) Fairchild
These glands are most strongly developed when the ovipositor is modified into a sting.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 14, Slice 2" by Various

In news:

Her ovipositor, an organ used for laying eggs, looks like the edge of a saw.
The female, equipped with a serrated-edge ovipositor, cuts into the fruit skin and deposits one to three eggs.