ne·​ne | \ ˈnā-(ˌ)nā How to pronounce nene (audio) \

Definition of nene

: an endangered goose (Branta sandvicensis synonym Nesochen sandvicensis) of the Hawaiian Islands that usually inhabits waterless uplands and feeds on berries and vegetation

Illustration of nene

Illustration of nene

Examples of nene in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The namesake nene potstickers are connected by a lacy batter on top and filled with shiitake or pork. Sarah Fritsche,, "Best new restaurants and bars to visit in the Mission right now," 17 June 2018 Look for Island Sole, 728 Front St., whose sign shows a nene wearing flip-flops. Brian J. Cantwell,, "Rainy day on Maui? Here are 5 great things to do beyond the beach," 24 Apr. 2018

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

First Known Use of nene

1902, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for nene

Hawaiian nēnē

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about nene

Statistics for nene

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for nene

The first known use of nene was in 1902

See more words from the same year

More from Merriam-Webster on nene

Spanish Central: Translation of nene Encyclopedia article about nene

Comments on nene

What made you want to look up nene? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


providing supplementary assistance

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!