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Borrowed from Spanish zopilote, from Classical Nahuatl tzopīlōtl.


zopilote (plural zopilotes)

  1. A New World vulture of the family Cathartidae, especially the black vulture (Coragyps atratus).
    • 2016, Lawrence Swaim, Dangerous Pilgrims:
      I was laying absolutely still in the cab of the wrecked truck —I had the crazy idea that if I did not move, I would bleed less—and I looked out of the hole where the windshield had been and saw a zopilote perched on the hood of the truck.



Borrowed from Classical Nahuatl tzopīlōtl.


  • IPA(key): (Spain) /θopiˈlote/ [θo.piˈlo.t̪e]
  • IPA(key): (Latin America) /sopiˈlote/ [so.piˈlo.t̪e]
  • Rhymes: -ote
  • Syllabification: zo‧pi‧lo‧te


zopilote m (plural zopilotes)

  1. a zopilote, a buzzard, a vulture
    Synonyms: buitre, gallinazo, jote

Usage notes[edit]

  • Zopilote is used predominantly in Mexico and some parts of Central America; buitre is used as the official term in Spain, Central America & elsewhere. Chupilote is an interesting variation among people in central Mexico, probably a conflation with the verb chupar, meaning "to suck". In Bolivia, Colombia, and Ecuador it's known as gallinazo.

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