ANIMAL WORD LIST
English–Swedish–French–Latin Animal Word List
This list can be used by anyone who needs to find animal names in the above languages.
Words or letters within / / can be left out, e.g. ‘cottontail /rabbit/’, ‘pussy /cat/’. Usually one slash (/)
denotes a variant, e.g. ‘green woodpigeon/woodpecker’, where / can be read as ‘or’. <= developed
from (e.g. from a Latin word).
AE=American English, Danish, English, French, Greek,
Ho=Dutch, Italian, Latin, Norwegian, Portuguese,
Ry=Russian, Spanish, Swedish, Sverige (Sweden),
Ty=German, adjective, dialect/al/, diminutive,
jmf=cf=compare, koll=collective, plural, N.G.=National
Geographic Magazine, VK=Västerbottens-Kuriren (a local newspaper), S.N.
Sveriges Natur (a magazine published by “Naturskyddsföreningen” = The Environmental Protection
Asterisk (*) denotes endangered species, esp. in Sweden, according to the “Red List” 2005-
05-11, published by The Swedish National Environment Protection Board (see “Sources”:
Naturvårdsverkets ‘Rödlista’). A new list will be published in 2010. N.G. 1995/3 contains pictures and
silhouettes of 632 endangered species in the USA. N.G. 1995/9 contains “Hawaii’s Lost World”,
extinct or endangered species. N.G. 1999/2 is almost completely devoted to “Biodiversity”. See also
S.N. 1994/4 about endangered fish species and P.A. Morris (1993): A Red Data Book for British
Mammals, The Mammal Society, London. You can also find Red Lists on the Internet, e.g. “Lista
Rossa degli Uccelli d’Italia” = “Red List of Italian Birds”. This one is very useful and contains many
“The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species”. A new list was published in
2011. More about threatened species: www.arkive.org/ (A marvellous site!!!)
(English words:) Words which are often difficult for Non-English Speakers are sometimes explained
in phonetic spelling, always within brackets, [ ]. Often only the main accent is denoted. [--'-] means
that the third syllable is stressed.
Names which are the same in all three modern languages are usually not included, e.g. many dog
species. As regards dogs, see American Kennel Club’s site.
Click on Breeds. There you will find many, many breeds with photos and
information. A very good Swedish site of the same kind is Aktivhund.se
Here is a comprehensive French site: ChiensDeRace.com.
Here are cat breeds galore: Wikipedia: List of cat breeds
Wikipedia: Lista över kattraser and in French:
Horse breeds: Wikipedia: Lista över hästraser and
Wikipedia: List of horse_breed and in French:
Fer ā cheval and
Lexique du cheval.
Cattle breeds will be found in Wikipedia: Lista över nötkreatursraser and
Wikipedia: List of breeds of cattle and
Wikipedia: Liste des races bovines.
Oklahoma State University has a site where you can find sheep, goat and swine breeds besides horses
and cattle already mentioned.
Some animals have several different names (dialectal or regional), and some names can denote
several different animals. Besides animal names there are also terms connected with animals (e.g. E
‘entomophagous’) and there are many etymological or other linguistic commentaries.
Baby animal names, see: Zooborns
The list, which comprises more than 3,000 species, is of course far
from complete as there are at least 2 million different animal species, 30 million according to certain
scientists. The number of insect species is considered to be at least 1.5 million; in Sweden 18,000
species have been described. N.G. 1999/2, page 22, contains up-to-date figures. According to
Encyclopedia of Life (EOL) there are 1.8 million species (of plants and animals) named and
Consequently my selection must be somewhat arbitrary, but I have tried to include as many
common (=well-known) animals as possible, esp. Swedish or Scandinavian. European mammals are
very well represented thanks to Brink’s book “Alla Europas däggdjur” (All Europe’s Mammals), where
the names are given in Latin, Swedish, Danish, Norwegian, Finnish, English, French and German.
Kai Curry-Lindahl’s “Afrikas däggdjur” is another fresh source. In it the names are given in Swedish,
Latin, English, French and sometimes in Swahili or other African languages.
Animal Diversity Web edited by The University of Michigan Museum of Zoology contains most of the
world’s Mammals, Birds, Reptiles, Fishes and Other Vertebrates, chiefly in English and Latin. Try it!
North American Mammals is also very interesting.
Here is a mammalian lexicon where you can find Latin and Greek words explained in English:
A Mammalian Lexicon
More than 4,850 mammals + 10,000 subspecies will be found on the following site, which contains
‘anything’ you wish to know: Planet’ Mammifčres
There are two versions, one in English and one in French. Well worth many visits!
There are many birds, most of them from the Western European fauna. Cramp & Perrin’s “Handbook
of the Birds of Europe...” has been a real “gold mine” for me. In those nine volumes the names are
given in Latin, English, Dutch, French, German, Russian, Spanish and Swedish. And the pictures
are exquisite! More birds:
“Avibase” is marvellous.
Another great site is Oiseaux.net. I was astounded by the amount of information and all
the pictures (which can all be enlarged). Try it!
Another book which gives a lot of information to a person who is interested in languages is
Svensson’s “Identification Guide...”. Michael Walter’s “The Complete Birds...” fills up with all
imaginable bird names in English and Latin. Yet another book with several languages (English,
Latin, German, Dutch, French and Swedish) is “A Field Guide to the Birds of Britain and Europe” by
Peterson-Mountfort-Hollom. (See Sources!)
On the Internet there are many sites with animal names, mostly in English and Latin, but French,
German, and Swedish can also be found.
“The Multilingual Bird-search Engine” has bird names in 18
Try also: Birds of Denmark. A wonderful site!
Here is an interesting site: The Birds of North America Online.
Here you will find 222 different owls: The Owl Pages
As regards the butterflies , most of the names are from “Europas fjärilar” by Higgins & Riley.
Among ab 380 butterflies described I have mainly chosen those which are to be found in
Scandinavia. The following site contains a lot of information and pictures of butterflies:
See also Imaginebutterflies.dk
and Parnassius of the World. (Butterflies galore!)
In “Svärmare och spinnare i Europa och Nordafrika” (Hawk moths and Spinning moths in Europe
and North Africa), by Rougeot & Viette, the names are given in Swedish, Latin, English, German,
About bumblebees: see Google images Bombus. Lots of beautiful photos!
A book that has been very useful to me is Gozmány’s “Seven-Language Thesaurus of European
Animals”. (See Sources!)
Try Biopix where you will find lots of biological
pictures and names of species in 8 different languages.
A marvellous “site” is FishBase . Lots of fish photos!
I have added some site addresses. Normally you can mark a name and use Google or other search
engines to get more information. Wikipedia usually gives names in many languages.
Apart from the Animal Word List there is a list of Mammal Orders and Families and a list of Bird
Families. Moreover, there is a Latin/Greek–Swedish Word List containing a selection of words you
will find in animal names, and some anatomical terms.
For (possible) flaws and shortcomings I apologize.
© P.O. Jacobson, Umeå. (Updated July 2012)