megafauna

noun
mega·fau·na | \-ˌfȯ-nə, -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 \-nᵊl \ adjective

Examples of megafauna in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Human involvement in the disappearance of the Pleistocene megafauna is still the subject of intense debate, but this is hardly the first time we've been implicated. Kiona N. Smith, Ars Technica, "Mammals are smaller than they used to be, and it’s our fault," 19 Apr. 2018 In fact, White Sands has the highest concentration of megafauna tracks in the United States. Hayden Carpenter, Outside Online, "Our Next National Park Could Be in New Mexico," 3 July 2018 Koalas experienced a precipitous population decline about the same time that much of Australia's megafauna vanished more than 30,000 years ago. Joel Achenbach, Washington Post, "Koala genome shows how the adorable marsupial lives on eucalyptus leaves," 2 July 2018 After both Ling-Ling and Hsing-Hsing died in the early 1990s, the nation’s capital was suddenly without its most charismatic megafauna. Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonian, "A Primer on the Zoo’s Possibly Pregnant Giant Panda," 28 June 2018 So villainizing an inconvenient megafauna helped save a species. Matt Simon, WIRED, "Inconvenient Minifauna and the Invasion of the Hammerhead Flatworms," 25 May 2018 Once the first people reached the Americas, their activities seem to have taken a steeper toll on the local megafauna than on other continents. Kiona N. Smith, Ars Technica, "Mammals are smaller than they used to be, and it’s our fault," 19 Apr. 2018 Some scientists lay the blame squarely on humanity’s shoulders, arguing overhunting doomed the planet's megafauna. Jason G. Goldman, Scientific American, "In 200 Years Cows May Be the Biggest Land Mammals on the Planet," 20 Apr. 2018 Such problems are the charismatic megafauna of social-media dysfunction. Ethan Zuckerman, The Atlantic, "This Is So Much Bigger Than Facebook," 23 Mar. 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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Last Updated

24 Sep 2018

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The first known use of megafauna was in 1927

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