non-avian dinosaur

noun
variants: or nonavian dinosaur
plural non-avian dinosaurs or nonavian dinosaurs

Definition of non-avian dinosaur

: any dinosaur that is not a bird These new data show that certain non-avian dinosaurs and early birds shed their skin in ways very similar to that of modern birds and mammals.— Hanneke Meijer Following a mass extinction at the end of the Cretaceous period some 65 million years ago, an event that drove non-avian dinosaurs extinct, the size and diversity of mammals exploded over a 15-million-year period, researchers say.— Pete Spotts Whereas the last of the nonavian dinosaurs certainly perished 64.5 million years ago, many other animals survived …— James Gurney — compare avian dinosaur

First Known Use of non-avian dinosaur

1988, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about non-avian dinosaur

Time Traveler for non-avian dinosaur

Time Traveler

The first known use of non-avian dinosaur was in 1988

See more words from the same year

Statistics for non-avian dinosaur

Last Updated

27 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Non-avian dinosaur.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/non-avian%20dinosaur. Accessed 22 Feb. 2020.

Comments on non-avian dinosaur

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

WORD OF THE DAY

See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

More Confusing Words—Quiz

  • cats on impossible timber
  • The magician ______ moved the selected card to the top of the deck.
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Add Diction

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

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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