Can You Spell These Animal Species Correctly?

By: Kennita Leon
Image: Fernando Trabanco Fotografía/Moment/gettyimages

About This Quiz

The species of any living thing is one of the most basic (and easiest) ways that it can be classified or placed within a group. If animals and plants did not interbreed or even evolve, it would be very easy to know them like the backs of our hands. But change is inevitable in nature and thus, we now have thousands, if not, millions of species in existence, some of which are microspecies. The way in which these are identified is by the two-part scientific name that each living thing is given, known as a binomial, and that's exactly what we want to quiz you on today. Could you spell the scientific names (or species) of these animals if we showed you what they were? 

So as we said, we'll give you a list of binomials and it'll be up to you to guess which one of them is the correct spelling for the appropriate animal. If you can get even half of these correct, we'll be extremely impressed by your skill. 

If you're  a huge animal or science lover, it's time to prove how much you know about spelling the names of these animal species. 

The grizzly bear is a large population of the brown bear of North America, most of which reside in Alaska. Scientists usually refer to them as North American brown bear, or by their scientific name, Ursus arctos.

Wolves, also known as gray wolves or timber wolves, are the largest existing member of the canine family. Native to Eurasia and North America, these canines are identified by their large size, pointed ears and muzzles and predominantly mottled gray coat.

The jaguar, native to North America, is a species of wild cat and the only extant member of the genus Panthera. It is listed as a near-threatened species on IUCN Red List due to its declining numbers as a result of loss and fragmentation of its habitat.

The Equus burchellii is a species of zebra known by many names including Equus quagga, the plains zebra, the common zebra, Burchell's zebra and quagga. It is a widespread species ranging from south of Ethiopia, Botswana, East Africa and eastern South Africa.

The leopard is a member of the Felidae family and one of the five species of the genus Panthera. Found in Africa and Asia, the leopard is recognized by its long body, short legs, large skull and pale yellow and golden coat with black rosettes.

The African bush elephant, also called the African savanna elephant, is the largest living terrestrial animal and the larger of the two species of African elephants. It is classified as a vulnerable species due to the destruction of its habitat and poaching for ivory.

The giraffe Camelopardalis is a species of giraffe native to North Africa with three known subspecies. It is commonly referred to as the northern giraffe and the three-horned giraffe and is found in the woodlands, savannahs and shrublands.

The Struthio camelus, known as the common ostrich or simply ostrich, is a species of African flightless birds. It is the largest living species of birds and the fastest flightless bird with a top speed of 43 mph.

This medium-sized bear is native to the North American continent. It is the most common type of bear in this region of the world, and also the smallest.

The Delphinus delphis, also known as the short-beaked common dolphin, is a medium-sized species of common dolphin. It is more widespread than the long-beaked common dolphin and is found in tropical and warm temperate oceans.

The hippopotamus amphibius, or common hippopotamus, is the third largest land mammal after the elephant and rhinoceros. It is a semiaquatic, primarily herbivorous mammal indigenous to sub-Sahara Africa.

The coyote, native to North America, is a species of canine with 19 recognized subspecies. Known as the American jackal, it is a close relative of the gray wolf, along with the eastern wolf and red wolf.

The arctic fox is a small-sized fox known by many names including white fox, snow fox and polar fox. It is indigenous to the Arctic regions of the Northern Hemisphere and is identified by its thick, warm coat which also acts as camouflage.

The cheetah is a vulnerable species of large cat found in North, Southern and East Africa and a few regions in Iran. It is the fastest land animal and is easily identified by its yellowish tan or rufous to grayish white coat, with nearly 2,000 solid black spots.

The musk ox is an arctic hooded mammal which derived its name from the strong, musky odor emitted by males during the seasonal rut. It is a member of the Bovine family and Caprinae subfamily and a close relative of goats and sheep rather than oxen.

The Amazonian manatee, also called sea cow, is the smallest species of manatee native to the Amazon basin in Brazil, Bolivia, Colombia, Peru and Ecuador. It has thin, wrinkled skin, a white patch on its chest, and fine hairs scattered over its body.

The wild turkey, native to North America, is an upland ground bird and the heaviest member of the order Galliformes. Their habitats include hardwood forests with scattered openings such as fields, pastures, seasonal marshes and orchards.

The Bengal tiger is an endangered population of mainland Asian tigers in the Indian subcontinent. It is the largest wild cat alive today and the national animal of India and Bangladesh.

The blue and yellow macaw is a New World parrot known for its long tail and colorful feathers of blue and yellow, hence its name. This brightly colored parrot can be found the forests, woodlands and savannahs of South America.

The puma, native to the Americas, is a large wild cat of the subfamily Felinae. It is known by many names including cougar, panther, mountain cat and catamount. It is the largest North American cat and the second-heaviest cat in the New World.

The moose, or elk in Eurasia, is the largest and heaviest extant species within the deer family. It differs from other deer species due to its large size and broad, open-hand shaped antlers sported by the males.

Llamas are domesticated camelids indigenous to South America where they are used as meat and pack animals. They are intelligent, social animals and are capable of learning simple tasks after a few repetitions.

Reindeer, known as caribou in North America, are a species of deer indigenous to the Arctic, sub-Arctic, mountainous, boreal and tundra regions of North America, Europe and Siberia. It is a member of the Cervidae family and the Capreolinae subfamily.

The blue whale is a marine mammal and the largest animal known to have ever existed. It has a bluish-gray, long and slender body with a maximum recorded length of 98 feet and a weight of 173 tons.

The mallard is a dabbling duck of the waterfowl Anatidae family and the Anatinae subfamily. The female of the species sports a brown-speckled plumage while the male has a glossy green head, gray wings and belly with brown the rest of the body.

The green turtle is a large sea turtle of the Cheloniidae family and the only species of the Chelonia genus. It is known by other names including the Pacific green turtle, black sea turtle and green sea turtle.

The ocelot is a species of wild cat widely distributed throughout Central and South America, Mexico and southern Texas and southern Arizona in the United States. It is a least concerned species with an estimated 40,000 mature individuals.

The harbor seal, or common seal, is a species of true seal found in the coastal waters of northern Pacific and Atlantic oceans and the North and Baltic seas. It is a least concerned species and is identified by its brown, gray, tan or silvery-white skin.

The white stork is a large, carnivorous bird of the stork family Ciconiidae with two known subspecies. It is distinguished by its predominantly white plumage with black on its wings, long, pointed red beans and long, red legs.

The bald eagle is a sea eagle and a bird of prey with two known subspecies. It is indigenous to North America ranging across Canada, Alaska the contiguous United States and the northern region of New Mexico.

The common pheasant is a bird of the pheasant family and a well-known gamebird. It is listed as a least-concerned species and is found in Europe and North America outside its native habitat in Asia.

The Brazilian salmon pink bird-eating tarantula is the third largest species of tarantula in the world. This species of tarantula, native to northeastern Brazil, is a popular choice of pet due to its large size and readiness to breed.

The giant panda, known as panda bear or panda, is a species of bear indigenous to South Central China. It is known for its distinct appearance which consists of black patches around its eyes, over the ears and across its body.

The polar bear, also known as the white bear, is a large, hypercarnivorous bear which inhabits the Arctic Circle. It is identified by its thick, solid white coat which protects it from the cold on land and in the sea.

The snowy owl is a large, white owl of the true owl family Strigidae and a native to the Arctic regions of Eurasia and North America. They are a nocturnal, carnivorous species which primarily hunts rodents and waterfowl at night.

The wild yak is a large, wild bovid and the ancestor of the domestic yak. It is native to the Himalayas and is characterized by a robust frame, sturdy legs, rounded cloven hooves and shaggy fur with a dense woolly undercoat over the chest, flanks and thighs.

The raccoon, native to North America, is a medium-sized mammal and the largest species of the procyonid family. It is known by many names including the common raccoon, North American raccoon, northern raccoon or coon.

The killer whale, or orca, is a toothed whale and the largest member of the oceanic dolphin family. It is an apex predator and feeds primarily on fish and other marine mammals such as dolphins and seals.

The chimpanzee is a species of great ape known as the common chimpanzee, robust chimpanzee or simply "chimp." It is easily recognized by its coarse black hair and bare face, hands, feet, fingers, toes, palms and soles of the feet.

The American badger is a short-legged omnivore native to North America specifically western and central United States, south-central Canada, and northern Mexico. It is a member of the Mustelidae family and is found in open grasslands and prairie regions.

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