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Geographical MovementPlay
Populate can imply gradual settlement in a new area over time. SlideNomadic tribes began to populate the fertile plains millennia ago.
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Dynamic GrowthPlay
Used to describe growing populations, often related to migration or birth rates. SlideThe suburbs continue to populate rapidly due to the affordable housing.
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Ecological ContextsPlay
It's used to talk about species spreading in an ecosystem. SlideInvasive species have populated the lake, threatening native life.