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[too-kan, -kahn, too-kahn] /ˈtu kæn, -kɑn, tuˈkɑn/
any of several usually brightly colored, fruit-eating birds of the family Ramphastidae, of tropical America, having a very large bill.
(initial capital letter) Astronomy. the constellation Tucana.
1550-60; < French < Portuguese tucano < Tupi tucan (imitative of its cry) Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for toucan
  • The fruit of nutmeg trees typically ripen early in the day, possibly to take advantage of the toucan's early morning activity.
  • My toucan, an aracari is little dynamo, and my rabbits rule the house.
  • The small zoo houses local species such as spider monkeys and tropical birds, including a toucan.
  • The toucan's long bill has long perplexed biologists.
  • In a world of birds that includes the flamingo, the toucan and the bald eagle, it can't be much fun to be a pigeon.
  • Normally, the guide goes first, and it is the guide who spots the toucan or the peccary.
British Dictionary definitions for toucan


any tropical American arboreal fruit-eating bird of the family Ramphastidae, having a large brightly coloured bill with serrated edges and a bright plumage
Word Origin
C16: from French, from Portuguese tucano, from Tupi tucana, probably imitative of its cry
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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Word Origin and History for toucan

bright-colored bird of S.America, 1560s, from French toucan (1550s) and Spanish tucan; from Tupi (Brazil) tuka, tukana, probably imitative of its call.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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