mega·​fau·​na | \ ˈme-gə-ˌfȯ-nə How to pronounce megafauna (audio) , -ˌfä-\

Definition of megafauna

1 : animals (such as bears, bison, or mammoths) of particularly large size
2 : fauna consisting of individuals large enough to be visible to the naked eye

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Other Words from megafauna

megafaunal \ ˈme-​gə-​ˌfȯ-​nᵊl How to pronounce megafaunal (audio) , -​ˌfä-​ \ adjective

Examples of megafauna in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

But if the researchers are correct, their window to study these megafauna may be closing as humans continue to threaten the animals’ populations and the biodiversity of their habitats. Doug Johnson, Quartz, "Elephants and whales could give us the cure for cancer—unless we keep killing them," 14 Aug. 2019 In a village just outside Kafue, Gertrude Mwiba is one of those trying to rub along with the local megafauna. The Economist, "How to curb the trade in endangered species," 8 Aug. 2019 Then there's the obvious limitation that tourists are generally interested mainly, or exclusively, in charismatic megafauna. Cathleen O'grady, Ars Technica, "Safari tourist snaps could produce useful conservation data," 25 July 2019 Humans may not have been responsible for the extinction of African megafauna. Rafil Kroll-zaidi, Harper's magazine, "Findings," 10 Feb. 2019 On Assignment Projects PHOTOGRAPHY Document your experience with Botswana’s resident megafauna in photographs. National Geographic, "Botswana & Victoria Falls High School Expedition," 17 June 2019 By around 13,000 years ago, our ancestors were on every continent, sharing the Ice Age-era Earth with megafauna like the mastodon. Rachael Lallensack, Smithsonian, "Here Are 12 Things You Might Miss in the Smithsonian’s New Fossil Hall," 7 June 2019 Spreading humans, diminishing megafauna In Africa at the dawn of human dispersal, mammals were already smaller, on average, than those living elsewhere in the world, with a mean body mass about half that of Eurasian mammals. Kiona N. Smith, Ars Technica, "Mammals are smaller than they used to be, and it’s our fault," 19 Apr. 2018 This change in climate has been blamed for the simultaneous extinctions of a number of marine megafauna species, including the largest and most powerful predator to have ever lived—the megalodon. Jill Kiedaisch, Popular Mechanics, "Exploding Stars Might Have Brought an End to the Prehistoric Megalodon," 14 Dec. 2018

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

1927, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for megafauna

Last Updated

27 Aug 2019

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Time Traveler for megafauna

The first known use of megafauna was in 1927

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Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with megafauna Encyclopedia article about megafauna

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one from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan

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