fau·​na | \ ˈfȯ-nə How to pronounce fauna (audio) , ˈfä- \
plural faunas also faunae\ ˈfȯ-​ˌnē How to pronounce faunae (audio) , -​ˌnī , ˈfä-​ \

Definition of fauna

: animal life especially : the animals characteristic of a region, period, or special environment the diverse fauna of the island — compare flora

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Other Words from fauna

faunal \ ˈfȯ-​nᵊl How to pronounce faunal (audio) , ˈfä-​ \ adjective
faunally adverb

Did You Know?

Faunus and Fauna were the Roman woodland god and goddess for whom animals were a particular concern. Faunus was the Roman equivalent of the Greek god Pan, and like Pan, he had goats' legs. Their goat-legged helpers, called fauns, were known for their love of pleasure and mischief. The fauna of a continent are often very similar across a broad east-west band; from north to south, however, they may vary greatly.

Examples of fauna in a Sentence

studying the diverse fauna of the island studying the faunas of different islands
Recent Examples on the Web They are surrounded by other flora and fauna indigenous to Connecticut: great blue heron, blackback gull, black sea bass, peregrine falcon, white-tailed deer, loggerhead turtle, etc. Susan Dunne, courant.com, "CT Art Trail celebrates 25th anniversary with exhibit at Wadsworth Atheneum in Hartford," 16 Oct. 2020 Organic mulches act like a sponge to hold water; keep moisture in the soil; protect soil from erosion, and, as mulch breaks down, feeds the micro flora and fauna that help build healthy soils to supports plants. Nan Sterman, San Diego Union-Tribune, "October chores for home gardeners," 3 Oct. 2020 What remains constant is that Project Veritas is not unique amid the flora and fauna of the conservative movement. Matthew Phelan, The New Republic, "The Cozy Relationship Between Project Veritas and the Proud Boys," 30 Sep. 2020 With nearly 300 species of flora and fauna and dozens of edible and medicinal plants, the forest is vital to the food security of the villagers. Rina Chandran, The Christian Science Monitor, "A Thai village takes a novel approach to save ancestral forest," 30 Sep. 2020 Nine days later, Banks and his crew docked in today’s Botany Bay—and were mesmerized by the flora and fauna dispersed around the region. Lily Katzman, Smithsonian Magazine, "250 Years Ago, Joseph Banks Documented Australia’s Glorious Botanical Bounty," 26 Feb. 2020 And although China has made great strides in moving away from fossil fuels, its $6-trillion development project, the Belt and Road Initiative, poses serious risk to the flora and fauna inside and outside its borders. Gloria Dickie, Scientific American, "Global Biodiversity Is in Free Fall," 15 Sep. 2020 This book full of superrich bigots may have his highest count of nice fauna and awful people. Janet Maslin, New York Times, "A Python Ate the President’s Neighbor? Only in Carl Hiaasen’s Florida," 29 Aug. 2020 Industrialization replaces animal homes with human ones, and with markets for fauna such as the bats that gave us this coronavirus. Bathsheba Demuth, The Atlantic, "Siberia’s Malady Is the Same as Mine," 28 Aug. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'fauna.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of fauna

1771, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for fauna

New Latin, from Latin Fauna, sister of Faunus

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Time Traveler for fauna

Time Traveler

The first known use of fauna was in 1771

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Statistics for fauna

Last Updated

23 Oct 2020

Cite this Entry

“Fauna.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/fauna. Accessed 28 Oct. 2020.

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More Definitions for fauna


How to pronounce fauna (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of fauna

biology : all the animals that live in a particular area, time period, or environment


fau·​na | \ ˈfȯ-nə How to pronounce fauna (audio) \

Kids Definition of fauna

: the animal life typical of a region, period, or special environment the island's fauna


fau·​na | \ ˈfȯn-ə, ˈfän- How to pronounce fauna (audio) \
plural faunas also faunae\ -​ˌē How to pronounce faunae (audio) , -​ˌī How to pronounce faunae (audio) \

Medical Definition of fauna

: animal life especially : the animals characteristic of a region, period, or special environment — compare flora sense 1

Other Words from fauna

faunal \ -​ᵊl How to pronounce faunal (audio) \ adjective
faunally \ -​ᵊl-​ē How to pronounce faunally (audio) \ adverb

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More from Merriam-Webster on fauna

Nglish: Translation of fauna for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of fauna for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about fauna

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