Nicknames for the Animals

by Ark Encounter on August 12, 2015

“Little Head” (Cotylorhynchus)


“Gonzo Face Alpaca” (Theosodon)

Our designers and artists extensively research the animals to be displayed in the Ark Encounter. Their research includes examining fossils of various kinds and comparing the various species within the kinds present today to determine what traits may have been visible in the pairs on board Noah’s ark.

Constantly working with scientific animal names can be cumbersome and tedious, so our team has code-named many animals to make it easier to track their progress without getting tongue-tied. Some code-names sound like the scientific names, some are based on the looks of the creature, some are based on cultural references or inside jokes, and some are names of their current descendants. A list of “code names” and their scientific names is below. Try to read the Latin-based names to show why we use other names.

  • “Sail-less Spinosaur” (Baryonyx)
  • “Long Neck” (Nigersaurus)
  • “Dinorama-saurus” (Carnotaurus)
  • “Gonzo Face Alpaca” (Theosodon)
  • “John Kerry” (Jonkeria)
  • “Hyena” (Ictitherium)
  • “Whale-headed Rat-dog” (Pakicetus)
  • “The Sailor” (Dimetrodon)
  • “Colorado” (Scutosaurus)
  • “Terminator Pig” (Archaeotherium, aka entelodont)
  • “Big Bird” (Quetzalcoatlus)
  • “Rhino” (Trigonias)
  • “Bubble-beak” (Istiodactylid)
  • “Little Head” (Cotylorhynchus)