megafauna

noun

mega·​fau·​na ˈme-gə-ˌfȯ-nə How to pronounce megafauna (audio)
-ˌfä-
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
megafaunal adjective

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Extensive studies on megafauna have addressed the unique challenges of supporting and moving such massive bodies. Jeffrey M. Rodgers, Scientific American, 29 Sep. 2022 In Iceland, where there is no indigenous megafauna, domestic mountain sheep are herded, and Axelsson takes readers to a roundup. David James, Anchorage Daily News, 29 Oct. 2022 Conservation efforts are often dedicated to charismatic megafauna like whales, and publicity campaigns often hinge on a visual representation of how the appealing creature is being harmed. Heather Hansman, Outside Online, 27 Apr. 2020 Supporters claim a ban will conserve wildlife by discouraging Americans from traveling to Africa and killing wildebeests, zebras, elephants and other charismatic megafauna. Catherine E. Semcer, WSJ, 9 Oct. 2022 Over the course of evolution, immense megafauna have roamed the lands or swum in the seas. Jeffrey M. Rodgers, Scientific American, 29 Sep. 2022 Although they might be popularly imagined living way back with the dinosaurs, the Ice Age megafauna went extinct only moments ago, in staggered waves over human history. Peter Brannen, The Atlantic, 22 June 2022 The museum's exhibits also include some of the world's largest megafauna, thought to be 50,000 to 100,000 years old, and a variety of microfauna. CNN, 17 July 2022 But where the planet had rocketed out of ice ages before and the megafauna had kept up, now an unprecedented actor stepped on the landscape. Peter Brannen, The Atlantic, 22 June 2022 See More

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.

Word History

First Known Use

1927, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of megafauna was in 1927

Dictionary Entries Near megafauna

Cite this Entry

“Megafauna.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/megafauna. Accessed 4 Dec. 2022.

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