mam·​mal | \ ˈma-məl How to pronounce mammal (audio) \

Definition of mammal

: any of a class (Mammalia) of warm-blooded higher vertebrates (such as placentals, marsupials, or monotremes) that nourish their young with milk secreted by mammary glands, have the skin usually more or less covered with hair, and include humans

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Other Words from mammal

mammalian \ mə-​ˈmā-​lē-​ən How to pronounce mammalian (audio) , ma-​ \ adjective or noun
mammal-like \ ˈma-​məl-​ˌlīk How to pronounce mammal-like (audio) \ or less commonly mammallike adjective
mammal-like behavior mammallike reptiles

Examples of mammal in a Sentence

Human beings, dogs, and cats are all mammals.
Recent Examples on the Web Agile climbers, the cats readily scramble up tree trunks to pluck small mammals and birds from their cavities. National Geographic, "CREATE A FREE NAT GEO ACCOUNT TO CONTINUE READING," 15 May 2020 The wild pigs devour crops, destroy the environment, and sometimes prey upon animal eggs, small mammals and reptiles, according to Mississippi State University (MSU). Fox News, "5 of the most destructive invasive species in the US," 12 May 2020 But on 23 March, NEON ceased all inperson and onsite work, such as trapping mammals and insects and sampling soil and water. Elizabeth Pennisi, Science | AAAS, "Pandemic robs field scientists of ‘once in a lifetime’ moments," 15 Apr. 2020 The group operates a 24-hour hotline, responding to calls about distressed or deceased marine mammals and sea turtles. Laura Klairmont, CNN, "When Maine's seals are in trouble, she gets the call," 5 Mar. 2020 Other scientists think reptiles are a less likely source and that mammals and some birds have been the primary reservoir. Katie Camero, WSJ, "Scientists Link China Coronavirus to Intersection of Humans and Wildlife," 6 Feb. 2020 Bobcats are hunting in peoples’ yards for squirrels and other small mammals and birds that are attracted to bird feeders. Don Lyman,, "Now seen in the suburbs: the elusive bobcat," 29 Jan. 2020 Plenty of evidence, including isotopic ratios in fossil bones, supports the idea that Neanderthals living along the Mediterranean coast ate shellfish, marine mammals, and fish. Kiona N. Smith, Ars Technica, "Neanderthals may have been shallow free divers, suggests a new study," 19 Jan. 2020 The big serpents have been devouring native mammal and bird populations. USA TODAY, "MLK, robot unemployment, Python Bowl: News from around our 50 states," 14 Jan. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'mammal.' 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 mammal

1813, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for mammal

from base of New Latin Mammalia (Linnaeus), class name, noun derivative from neuter plural of mammālis, from Latin mamma "breast, udder" + -ālis -al entry 1 — more at mamma

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Time Traveler for mammal

Time Traveler

The first known use of mammal was in 1813

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Statistics for mammal

Last Updated

25 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Mammal.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 May. 2020.

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More Definitions for mammal


How to pronounce mammal (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of mammal

: a type of animal that feeds milk to its young and that usually has hair or fur covering most of its skin


mam·​mal | \ ˈma-məl How to pronounce mammal (audio) \

Kids Definition of mammal

: a warm-blooded animal (as a dog, mouse, bear, whale, or human being) with a backbone that feeds its young with milk produced by the mother and has skin usually more or less covered with hair


mam·​mal | \ ˈmam-əl How to pronounce mammal (audio) \

Medical Definition of mammal

: any of the higher vertebrate animals comprising the class Mammalia

Other Words from mammal

mammalian \ mə-​ˈmā-​lē-​ən, ma-​ How to pronounce mammalian (audio) \ adjective or noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on mammal

Spanish Central: Translation of mammal

Nglish: Translation of mammal for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of mammal for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about mammal

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