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[hahy-ber-nak-yuh-luh m] /ˌhaɪ bərˈnæk yə ləm/
noun, plural hibernacula
[hahy-ber-nak-yuh-luh] /ˌhaɪ bərˈnæk yə lə/ (Show IPA)
a protective case or covering, especially for winter, as of an animal or a plant bud.
winter quarters, as of a hibernating animal.
Also, hibernacle
[hahy-ber-nak-uh l] /ˈhaɪ bərˌnæk əl/ (Show IPA)
Origin of hibernaculum
1690-1700; < Latin hībernāculum winter residence, equivalent to hībernā(re) (see hibernate) + -culum -cule2 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for hibernaculum
  • The hibernaculum must also provide protection from light, noise, and predators.
  • The fungus may not be readily visible on the bats, especially after they leave the hibernaculum and groom themselves.
  • Landowner coordination for long-term protection of another important hibernaculum is under way.
  • Mating occurs directly before hibernation, but copulating pairs may be found in the hibernaculum throughout winter.
  • Members of a family usually overwinter in the same burrow or hibernaculum.
  • The cave has national significance because of the bat hibernaculum.
  • Individuals may move within the hibernaculum to find suitable temperatures.
  • All of these factors support the notion that losing any hibernaculum will have an unusually heavy impact on the local population.
  • The cave is also an important hibernaculum for several species of bats.
British Dictionary definitions for hibernaculum


noun (rare) (pl) -ula (-jʊlə), -les
the winter quarters of a hibernating animal
the protective case or covering of a plant bud or animal
Word Origin
C17: from Latin: winter residence; see hibernate
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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hibernaculum in Science
  1. A protective case, covering, or structure, such as a plant bud, in which an organism remains dormant for the winter.

  2. The shelter of a hibernating animal.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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