allomother

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English[edit]

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Etymology[edit]

allo- +‎ mother

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

allomother (plural allomothers)

  1. (zoology) A human or other creature that provides some maternal care for the young born by another.
    • 2000, Sarah Blaffer Hrdy, Mother Nature: Maternal Instincts and how They Shape the Human Species‎, page 162:
      Within hours of birth, baby langurs are spirited away from their mothers. They spend up to 50 percent of daylight hours passed from allomother to allomother
    • 2009 March 3, Natalie Angier, “In a Helpless Baby, the Roots of Our Social Glue”, New York Times:
      Among the !Kung foragers of the Kalahari, babies are held by a father, grandmother, older sibling or some other allomother maybe 25 percent of the time.

Related terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

Verb[edit]

allomother (third-person singular simple present allomothers, present participle allomothering, simple past and past participle allomothered)

  1. (transitive) To provide maternal care for another creature's young.