[ ap-ə-sə-MAD-ik ]
Part of speech: adjective
Origin: Greek, late 19th century
(of coloration or markings) serving to warn or repel predators.
(of an animal) having aposematic coloration or markings.
Examples of Aposematic in a sentence
" Poison dart frogs have bright aposematic designs to warn potential predators that they are dangerous. "
" Monarch butterfly caterpillars are poisonous, which is why they have aposematic coloring. "
Popularity Over Time
Aposematic finds its origins in Greek — specifically, a combination of the Greek words "apo" (away from) and "sēma" (sign). Even the roots of this word are warning you to stay back.
Did you Know?
“Red touches yellow, deadly fellow; red touches black, you're all right Jack." This phrase was coined to describe the difference between the deadly coral snake and the king snake. The latter reptile is nonvenomous; instead, it has an aposematic pattern meant to fool predators into believing it is a coral snake. Remembering the rhyme may just help you avoid a deadly bite — or avoid disturbing an innocent snake.