Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun An omnivorous burrow-dwelling bandicoot (Macrotis lagotis) of arid regions of Australia, having long ears, a long, tapering snout, and strong forelegs with long claws.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun Australian desert marsupial, with distinctive large ears and approximately the size of a rabbit.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun bandicoot with leathery ears like a rabbit

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Yuwaalaraay (Pama-Nyungan language of southeast-central Australia) bilbi.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Dharug.

Examples

  • It's the bilby, which is an endangered marsupial that lives in the desert.

    BBC (UK) Homepage main promotional content

  • However a high number of mammal species, 14 percent of the total mammalian fauna, are considered regionally or globally threatened, including the greater bilby (Macrotis lagotis VU), hairy-footed dunnart (Sminthopsis hirtipes), dusky hopping mouse (Notomys fuscus VU), mulgara (Dasycercus cristicauda VU), and kowari.

    Simpson desert

  • Several mammal species, including bilby (Macrotis lagotis VU), northern quoll (Dasyurus hallucatus) and golden bandicoot (Isoodon auratus VU), have declined or disappeared altogether from this ecoregion.

    Victoria Plains tropical savanna

  • They fill the same ecological niche as the bunny, only the bunny is better at it, and so since the introduction of the bunny to Australia, bilby numbers have dropped alarmingly.

    Rabbit, rabbit. « A Bird’s Nest

  • Twenty two native mammals are found in the park including dingo Canis familiaris dingo, red kangaroo Macropus rufus, common wallaroo M. robustus, marsupial mole Notoryctes typhlops, spinifex hopping mouse Notomys alexis, several bat species including Australian false vampire Marcoderma gigas (V), bilby Macrotis lagotis (E), occasional short nosed echidna Tachyglossus aculeatus and several small marsupials and native rodents.

    Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, Australia

  • Several mammal species, including bilby (Macrotis lagotis VU), northern quoll (Dasyurus hallucatus), pale field-rat (Rattus tunneyi), golden-backed tree-rat, and golden bandicoot have declined, especially in the lower rainfall lowland portions of this ecoregion.

    Kimberly tropical savanna

  • The park protects important habitat for an isolated population of the vulnerable bilby (Macrotis lagotis).

    Mitchell grass downs

  • The occasion was a ceremony at the Ipswich Nature Centre to officially name the bilby Jessica after Ms Watson, the Young Australian of the Year.

    NEWS.com.au | Top Stories

  • Bilby named for solo sailor Jessica Watson THREE rebels met in Ipswich today - larrikin swimmer Dawn Fraser, solo sailor Jessica Watson and a bilby who shouldn't have been born.

    NEWS.com.au | Top Stories

  • Jessica the bilby surprised staff at the centre because her mother had failed to breed with three partners and was then thought too old to bear young.

    NEWS.com.au | Top Stories

Comments

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  • Oh. All this time I thought his name was Bill, and he was just playing off that.

    Now I'm starting to doubt he's even a he. I mean, who knows? Bilby is a real word? Whoops.

    I actually stumbled across this page via the random word feature, of all things. :-)

    November 29, 2007

  • You know they have this campaign now to make chocolate bilbies for Easter. Because the rabbit is a destructive, introduced pest and the bilby is a native, cuddly, innocent chap. With, erm, big ears ... I swear WeirdNET is spying. Anyway, the bilby is a kind of symbol of environmentalism v capitalism.

    Eat me.

    November 29, 2007

  • And I am pleased to see that the bilby we have all come to know and love is an enviromenalist, with or without the bilby being a true animal.

    January 6, 2008

  • 2 × trilby ÷ 3

    April 24, 2008

  • bilbies, not bunnies

    July 11, 2008

  • Easter Bilby propaganda kit

    July 11, 2008

  • "Tired old Easter Bunny has given his job to Bilby. Easter eggs must be delivered all around Australia on time. But how?

    The rabbits will no longer help. Hungry cats and foxes roam Australia, always looking for something to eat.

    How will Easter Bilby and his friends get the job done?"

    - synoposis of 'Easter Bilby's Secret' by Ali Garnett and Kaye Kessing.

    July 11, 2008

  • Of course, you can't just have heathen bilbies taking over as spokesmarsupials for the most important Christian holy day.

    No worries. Turns out bilby is not only a Catholic already, but has actually been canonized within the church:

    July 11, 2008

  • Saint Bilby portrait series

    July 11, 2008

  • Hey bilby, do you read The Australian? Lovely article today: "Rescue helps bilbies beat extinction by a whisker", including a very strikingly composed photograph.

    Then there's this bit: "Rabbits were thought to compete with marsupials for food and to deprive them of sheltering vegetation. Dr McRae said attempts to eradicate rabbits in the reserve had failed, and a decision was made to leave them be. Surprisingly, the bilbies are doing well and may even be controlling rabbit numbers by eating their young."

    October 27, 2008