Animals in Chinese: LTL’s Ultimate 动物 Encyclopedia  

Animals in Chinese: LTL’s Ultimate 动物 Encyclopedia

Do you know your animals in Chinese?!

Chinese Zodiac Race - 12 Animals represent a 12 Year cycle in The Lunar Calendar

FIND OUT FIRST – How to say these Animals in Chinese

Well if you can’t answer yes with confidence you’re in the right place.

We’ve put together a 动物 (dòngwù – animal) encyclopedia to help you along.

You’ve probably already heard the sentence:

“Don’t translate Chinese word by word or you are going to have a bad time.”

Well, let me tell you something, it’s not always bad but more funny! You’ll soon find out why…

As well as the Chinese characters, and pinyin pronunciation of the words, we are going to talk about the name translated literally word by word from Chinese. Some of them may seem pretty logical but others are like “well it looks like big mouse but it has a pouch, so well pouch-mouse it is” and that’s how we get to the Chinese word for Kangaroo.

Chinese Zodiac Animals

Sea Animals in Chinese
Land Mammals in Chinese
Birds in Chinese
Marsupials in Chinese
Reptiles in Chinese

Insects in Chinese

Chinese Zodiac Animals

Time to learn our first 12 animals in Chinese. These are done in the order the animals finished in the great zodiac race which we documented not so long back.

The 12 animals of the Chinese Zodiac.

The 12 animals of the Chinese Zodiac

1. Rat in Chinese 

Characters: 鼠

Pinyin: Shǔ

Literal Translation: Rat

2. Ox in Chinese 

Characters: 牛

Pinyin: Niú

Literal Translation: Ox

3. Tiger in Chinese 

Characters: 虎

Pinyin: Hǔ

Literal Translation: Tiger

How to say Rabbit in Chinese?

How to say Rabbit in Chinese?

4. Rabbit in Chinese 

Characters: 兔子

Pinyin: Tù zǐ

Literal Translation: Rabbit

5. Dragon in Chinese 

Characters: 龙

Pinyin: Lóng

Literal Translation: Dragon

6. Snake in Chinese 

Characters: 蛇

Pinyin: Shé

Literal Translation: Snake

The Great Race: Ultimate Guide to Chinese Zodiacs

7. Horse in Chinese 

Characters: 马

Pinyin: Mǎ

Literal Translation: Horse

Chinese Zodiacs - The Full Circle

Chinese Zodiacs in Chinese

8. Goat in Chinese 

Characters: 羊

Pinyin: Yáng

Literal Translation: Goat/Sheep

9. Monkey in Chinese 

Characters: 猴

Pinyin: Hóu

Literal Translation: Monkey

10. Rooster in Chinese 

Characters: 公鸡

Pinyin: Gōng jī

Literal Translation: Public Chicken!

11. Dog in Chinese 

Characters: 狗

Pinyin: Gǒu

Literal Translation: Dog

12. Pig in Chinese 

Characters: 猪

Pinyin: Zhū

Literal Translation: Pig

Now we’ve discovered our first twelve animals in Chinese, it’s time to find out which animal you represent.

To do this is easy.

What year were you born? Match it up below with the animal and that’s your Chinese zodiac.

Chinese Zodiacs by year - Which one are you?

Chinese Zodiacs by year – Which one are you?

Sea Animals in Chinese

Barnacle in Chinese

Characters:  藤壶

Pinyin: Téng hú

Literal Translation: Vine Pot

Barracuda in Chinese

Characters:  梭子鱼

Pinyin: Suōzi yú

Literal Translation: Shuttle Fish

Catfish in Chinese

Characters:  鲶鱼

Pinyin: Nián yú

Literal Translation: Sheat Fish

Clam in Chinese 

Characters: 蛤蜊

Pinyin: Gé lí

Literal Translation: Clam

Clownfish in Chinese 

Characters: 小丑鱼

Pinyin: Xiǎochǒu yú

Literal Translation: “Little Ugly Fish” 😂😂😂

Coral in Chinese 

Characters:珊瑚

Pinyin: Shānhú

Literal Translation: “Coral”

Crab in Chinese 

Characters: 螃蟹

Pinyin: Pángxiè

Literal Translation: “Coral”

Cuttlefish in Chinese 

Characters: 墨鱼

Pinyin: Mòyú

Literal Translation: “Ink Fish”

Dolphin in Chinese 

Characters: 海豚

Pinyin: Hǎi tún

Literal Translation: “Sea Pig”

Eel in Chinese 

Characters: 鳗鱼

Pinyin: Mányú

Literal Translation: “Eel Fish”

Electric Eel in Chinese 

Characters: 电鳗

Pinyin: Diànmán

Literal Translation: “Electric Eel”

Fish in Chinese:

Characters: 鱼

Pinyin: Yú

Literal Translation: “Fish”

Flounder in Chinese:

Characters: 比目鱼

Pinyin: Bǐmùyú

Literal Translation: “Compare Eyes Fish”

Great White Shark in Chinese:

Characters: 大白鲨

Pinyin: Dàbáishā

Literal Translation: “Big White Shark”

Horseshoe Crab in Chinese:

Characters: 马蹄鞋

Pinyin: Mǎtíxiè

Literal Translation: “Horse Hoof Crab”

Jellyfish in Chinese 

Characters: 水母

Pinyin: Shuǐmǔ

Literal Translation: “Water Mother”

Lobster in Chinese 

Characters: 龙虾

Pinyin: Lóng xiā

Literal Translation: “Dragon shrimp”

Manta Ray in Chinese:

Characters: 蝠鲼

Pinyin: Fú fèn

Literal Translation: “Bat Ray”

Octopus in Chinese:

Characters: 八爪鱼

Pinyin: Bā zhuǎ yú

Literal Translation: “Eight Claw Fish”

Oyster in Chinese:

Characters: 牡蛎

Pinyin: Mǔlì

Literal Translation: “Male Oyster”

Piranha in Chinese:

Characters: 食人鱼

Pinyin: Shí rényú

Literal Translation: “Meal/Feed Person Fish”

Platypus in Chinese

Characters: 鸭嘴兽

Pinyin: Yā zuǐ shòu

Literal Translation: “Duck Mouth Beast”

Prawn in Chinese

Characters: 大虾

Pinyin: Dà xiā

Literal Translation: “Big Prawn/Shrimp”

Pufferfish in Chinese

Characters: 河豚

Pinyin: Hétún

Literal Translation: “River Pig”

Sea Lion in Chinese 

Characters: 海狮

Pinyin: Hǎishī

Literal Translation: “Sea Lion”

Sea Urchin in Chinese 

Characters: 海胆

Pinyin: Hǎidǎn

Literal Translation: “Sea Guts”

Seahorse in Chinese 

Characters: 海马

Pinyin: Hǎimǎ

Literal Translation: “Sea Horse”

Seal in Chinese 

Characters: 海豹

Pinyin: Hǎi bào

Literal Translation: “Sea Leopard”

Shark in Chinese 

Characters:鲨鱼

Pinyin: Shāyú

Literal Translation: “Shark Fish”

Shrimp in Chinese 

Characters: 虾

Pinyin: Xiā

Literal Translation: “Shrimp”

Squid in Chinese 

Characters: 鱿鱼

Pinyin: Yóuyú

Literal Translation: “Squid Fish”

Starfish in Chinese 

Characters: 海星

Pinyin: Hǎixīng

Literal Translation: “Star Fish”

Stingray in Chinese: 

Characters: 魟鱼

Pinyin: Hōngyú

Literal Translation: “Stingray Fish”

Walrus in Chinese 

Characters: 海象

Pinyin: Hǎi xiàng

Literal Translation: “Sea Elephant”

Whale in Chinese 

Characters: 鲸

Pinyin: Jīng

Literal Translation: Whale

Whale Shark in Chinese 

Characters: 鲸鲨

Pinyin: Jīng shā

Literal Translation: Whale Shark

Land Mammals in Chinese

Anteater in Chinese 

Characters: 食蚁兽

Pinyin: Shíyǐshòu

Literal Translation: “Eat Ant Beast”

Antelope in Chinese

Characters: 羚羊

Pinyin: Língyáng

Literal Translation: “Antelope Sheep”

•Same as Gazelle

Armadillo in Chinese

Characters: 犰狳

Pinyin: Qiúyú

Literal Translation: “Armadillo”

Badger in Chinese

Characters: 狗獾

Pinyin: Góuhuān

Literal Translation: “Dog Badger”

Bat in Chinese

Characters: 蝙蝠

Pinyin: Biānfú

Literal Translation: “Bat”

Bear in Chinese 

Characters: 熊

Pinyin: Xióng

Literal Translation: “Bear”

Beaver in Chinese 

Characters: 河狸

Pinyin: hélí

Literal Translation: “River Racoon Dog”

Boar in Chinese 

Characters: 野猪

Pinyin: Yězhū

Literal Translation: “Wild Pig/Boar”

Camel in ChineseėCharacters: 骆驼

Pinyin: Luòtuo

Literal Translation: “Camel Camel”

Cat in Chinese

Characters: 猫

Pinyin: Māo

Literal Translation: “Cat”

Cheetah in Chinese

Characters: 猎豹

Pinyin: Lièbào

Literal Translation: “Cheetah”

Chimpanzee in Chinese

Characters: 黑猩猩

Pinyin: Hēixīngxing

Literal Translation: “Black Orangutan Orangutan”

Chinchilla in Chinese

Characters: 龙猫

Pinyin: Lóngmāo

Literal Translation: “Dragon Cat”

• Also the Chinese name for the Studio Ghibli Anime character Totoro

Chipmunk in Chinese

Characters: 花栗鼠

Pinyin: Huālìshǔ

Literal Translation: “Flower Chestnut Mouse”

Cow in Chinese

Characters: 牛

Pinyin: Niú

Literal Translation: “Cow”

Coyote in Chinese

Characters: 郊狼

Pinyin: Jiāoláng

Literal Translation: “Suburb Wolf”

Deer in Chinese

Characters: 鹿

Pinyin: Lù

Literal Translation: “Deer”

Dog in Chinese

Characters: 狗

Pinyin: Gǒu

Literal Translation: “Dog”

Donkey in Chinese

Characters: 驴

Pinyin: Lǘ

Literal Translation: “Donkey”

Echidna in Chinese

Characters: 针鼹

Pinyin: Zhēnyǎn

Literal Translation: “Needle Mole”

Elephant in Chinese

Characters: 大象

Pinyin: Dàxiàng

Literal Translation: “Big Elephant”

Ferret in Chinese

Characters: 雪貂

Pinyin: Xuě diāo

Literal Translation: “Snow Ferret”

Fox in Chinese

Characters: 狐狸

Pinyin: Húli

Literal Translation: “Fox Racoon Dog”

Gazelle in Chinese

Characters: 羚羊

Pinyin: Língyáng

Literal Translation: “Antelope Sheep”

•Same as Antelope

Giant Panda in Chinese 

Characters: 大熊猫

Pinyin: Dà xióngmāo

Literal Translation: “Large Bear Cat”

Giraffe in Chinese

Characters: 长颈鹿

Pinyin: Cháng jǐng lù

Literal Translation: “Long Neck Deer

Gorilla in Chinese 

Characters: 大猩猩

Pinyin: Dàxīngxing

Literal Translation: “Big Orangutan Orangutan”

Guinea Pig in Chinese 

Characters: 豚鼠

Pinyin: Túnshǔ

Literal Translation: “Pig Mouse”

Hamster in Chinese 

Characters: 仓鼠

Pinyin: Cāngshǔ

Literal Translation: “Warehouse Mouse”

Hedgehog in Chinese 

Characters: 刺猬

Pinyin: Cìwei

Literal Translation: “Thorn Hedgehog”

Hippopotamus in Chinese 

Characters: 河马

Pinyin: Hémǎ

Literal Translation: “River Horse”

Human in Chinese 

Characters: 人类

Pinyin: Rénlèi

Literal Translation: “Human Kind”

Hyena in Chinese 

Characters: 鬣狗

Pinyin: Liègǒu

Literal Translation: “Mane Dog”

Jaguar in Chinese 

Characters: 美洲虎

Pinyin: Měizhōuhǔ

Literal Translation: “American Tiger”

Lemur in Chinese 

Characters: 狐猴

Pinyin: Húhóu

Literal Translation: “Fox Monkey”

Leopard in Chinese 

Characters: 豹子

Pinyin: Bàozi

Literal Translation: “Leopard”

Lion in Chinese 

Characters: 狮子

Pinyin: Shīzi

Literal Translation: “Lion”

Meerkat in Chinese 

Characters: 狐獴

Pinyin: Húměng

Literal Translation: “Fox Mongoose”

Mole in Chinese 

Characters: 鼹鼠

Pinyin: Yǎnshǔ

Literal Translation: “Mole Mouse”

Moose in Chinese 

Characters: 驼鹿

Pinyin: Tuólù

Literal Translation: “Camel Deer”

Mouse in Chinese 

Characters: 老鼠

Pinyin: Lǎoshǔ

Literal Translation: “Old Mouse”

Mule in Chinese 

Characters: 骡子

Pinyin: Luózi

Literal Translation: “Mule”

Orangutan in Chinese 

Characters: 猩猩

Pinyin: Xīngxing

Literal Translation: “Orangutan Orangutan”

Otter in Chinese 

Characters: 水獭

Pinyin: Shuǐtǎ

Literal Translation: “Water Otter”

Panther in Chinese 

Characters: 美洲豹

Pinyin: Měizhōubào

Literal Translation: “American Panther/Leopard”

Polar Bear in Chinese 

Characters: 北极熊

Pinyin: Běijíxióng

Literal Translation: “North Pole Bear”

Porcupine Bear in Chinese 

Characters: 豪猪

Pinyin: Háozhū

Literal Translation: “Forthright Pig”

Possum in Chinese

Characters: 负鼠

Pinyin: Fùshǔ

Literal Translation: “Burden Mouse”

Puma in Chinese

Characters: 美洲狮

Pinyin: “Měizhōushī

Literal Translation: “American Lion”

Racoon in Chinese

Characters: 浣熊

Pinyin: Huànxióng

Literal Translation: “Wash Bear”

Red Panda in Chinese 

Characters: 小熊猫

Pinyin: Xiǎo Xióngmāo

Literal Translation: “Little Bear Cat” 

Reindeer  in Chinese 

Characters: 驯鹿

Pinyin: Xùnlù

Literal Translation: “Tame Deer” 

Rhinoceros  in Chinese 

Characters: 犀牛

Pinyin: Xīniú

Literal Translation: “Rhino Ox” 

Sloth in Chinese 

Characters: 树懒

Pinyin: Shùlǎn

Literal Translation: “Rhino Ox” 

Squirrel in Chinese 

Characters: 松鼠

Pinyin: Sōngshǔ

Literal Translation: “Pine Mouse”

Tapir in Chinese 

Characters: 貘

Pinyin: Mò

Literal Translation: “Tapir”

Warthog in Chinese 

Characters: 疣猪

Pinyin: Yóuzhū

Literal Translation: “Wart Pig”

Weasel in Chinese 

Characters: 鼬鼠

Pinyin: Yòushǔ

Literal Translation: “Weasel Mouse”

White Tiger in Chinese 

Characters: 白虎

Pinyin: Báihǔ

Literal Translation: “White Tiger”

Wolf in Chinese 

Characters: 狼

Pinyin: Láng

Literal Translation: “Wolf”

Yak in Chinese 

Characters: 牦牛

Pinyin: Máoniú

Literal Translation: “Tail/Yak Cow”

Zebra in Chinese 

Characters: 斑马

Pinyin: Bānmǎ

Literal Translation: “Stripey Horse”

Birds in Chinese

Bird in Chinese

Characters: 鸟

Pinyin: niǎo

Literal Translation: “Bird”

Chicken in Chinese

Characters: 鸡

Pinyin: jī

Literal Translation: “Chicken”

Crane in Chinese

Characters:  鹤

Pinyin: hè

Literal Translation: “Crane”

Duck in Chinese

Characters: 鸭 子

Pinyin: yā zi

Literal Translation: “duck”

Eagle in Chinese

Characters: 鹰

Pinyin: yīng

Literal Translation: “Eagle”

Emu in Chinese

Characters:  鸸鹋

Pinyin: ér miáo

Literal Translation: “Big Flightless Bird”

Falcon in Chinese

Characters: 隼

Pinyin: sǔn

Literal Translation: “Falcon”

Flamingo in Chinese 

Characters: 火烈鸟

Pinyin: Huǒ liè niǎo

Literal Translation: “Fire Strong Bird”

Goose in Chinese 

Characters: 鹅

Pinyin: é

Literal Translation: “Goose”

Hummingbird in Chinese 

Characters: 蜂 鸟

Pinyin:  fēng niǎo

Literal Translation: Wasp Bird

Kingfisher in Chinese 

Characters: 翠 鸟

Pinyin: cuì niǎo

Literal Translation: “Kingfisher”

Kiwi in Chinese 

Characters: 几维鸟

Pinyin: jǐ wéi niǎo

Literal Translation: “A Few Thinking”

Magpie in Chinese 

Characters: 喜 鹊

Pinyin: xǐ què

Literal Translation: “Magpie”

Ostrich in Chinese 

Characters: 鸵 鸟

Pinyin: tuó niǎo

Literal Translation: “Ostrich”

Owl in Chinese 

Characters: 猫头鹰

Pinyin: Māo tóu yīng

Literal Translation: “Cat Head Eagle”

Parrot in Chinese 

Characters: 鹦鹉

Pinyin: yīng wǔ

Literal Translation: “Parrot”

Peacock in Chinese 

Characters: 孔雀

Pinyin: kǒng què

Literal Translation: “Hole Sparrow”

Pelican in Chinese 

Characters: 鹈鹕

Pinyin: tí hú

Literal Translation: “Pelican”

Penguin in Chinese 

Characters:企鹅

Pinyin: Qì’é

Literal Translation: “Standing Goose”

Pheasant in Chinese 

Characters: 野鸡

Pinyin: Yějī

Literal Translation: “Wild Chicken”

Quail in Chinese 

Characters: 鹌鹑

Pinyin: ān chún

Literal Translation: “Quail”

Robin in Chinese 

Characters: 罗 宾

Pinyin: luó bīn

Literal Translation:

Sparrow in Chinese 

Characters:

Pinyin:

Literal Translation: “Collect Guest”

Swan in Chinese

Characters:天 鹅

Pinyin:tiān é

Literal Translation: “Sky Goose”

Toucan in Chinese

Characters: 巨嘴鸟

Pinyin: Jù zuǐ niǎo

Literal Translation: “Huge Mouth Bird”

Toucan in Chinese 

Characters: 巨嘴鸟

Pinyin: jù zuǐ niǎo

Literal Translation: “Huge Mouth Bird”

Vulture in Chinese 

Characters: 秃鹫

Pinyin: tū jiù

Literal Translation: “Bald Eagle”

Woodpecker in Chinese 

Characters:啄木鸟

Pinyin: Zhuómùniǎo

Literal Translation: “Peck Wood Bird”

Marsupials in Chinese

Ok ok… Marsupials are a type of mammal too, but because they have such great names in Chinese we thought they deserved their own separate section. Another appropriate name could be ‘Pouch Animals in Chinese‘.

Kangaroo in Chinese

Characters: 袋鼠

Pinyin: Dài shǔ

Literal Translation: “Pouch Mouse”

Koala in Chinese

Characters: 树袋熊

Pinyin: Shù dài xióng

Literal Translation: “Tree Pouch Bear”

Quokka in Chinese

Characters: 短尾矮袋鼠

Pinyin: Duǎn wěi ǎi dàishǔ

Literal Translation: “Short-tailed Short Pouch Mouse”

Tasmanian Devil in Chinese

Characters: 袋獾

Pinyin: Dài huān

Literal Translation: “Pouch Badger”

Wallabee in Chinese

Characters: 小袋鼠

Pinyin: Xiǎo Dài shǔ

Literal Translation: “Small Pouch Mouse”

Wombat in Chinese 

Characters: 袋熊

Pinyin: Dài xióng

Literal Translation: “Pouch Bear”

Reptiles in Chinese

Alligator in Chinese

Characters: 鳄鱼

Pinyin: È yú

Literal Translation: “Alligator Fish”

*same as Crocodile

Bearded Dragon in Chinese

Characters: 胡子龙

Pinyin: Húzi lóng

Literal Translation: “Beard Dragon”

Chameleon

Characters: 变色龙

Pinyin: Biànsèlóng

Literal Translation: “Change Colour Dragon”

Cobra in Chinese 

Characters: 眼镜蛇

Pinyin: Yǎn jìng shé

Literal Translation: “Eyeglasses Snake”

Crocodile in Chinese

Characters: 鳄鱼

Pinyin: È yú

Literal Translation: “Crocodile Fish”

*same as Alligator

Frog in Chinese

Characters: 青蛙

Pinyin: Qīngwā

Literal Translation: “Green Grass Frog”

Gecko in Chinese 

Characters: 壁虎

Pinyin: Bì hǔ

Literal Translation: “Wall Tiger”

Iguana in Chinese

Characters: 鬣蜥

Pinyin: Liè xī

Literal Translation: “Mane Lizard”

Komodo Dragon in Chinese

Characters: 科莫多龙

Pinyin: Kē mò duō lóng

Literal Translation: “Branch Nothing Many Dragon”award for weirdest literal translation!

Lizard in Chinese

Characters: 蜥蜴 Xīyì

Pinyin: Xī yì

Literal Translation: “Lizard”

Salamander in Chinese

Characters: 蝾

Pinyin: Róng

Literal Translation: “Salamander”

Toad in Chinese

Characters: 蟾蜍

Pinyin: Chánchú

Literal Translation: “Toad”

Tortoise in Chinese

Characters: 乌龟

Pinyin: Wūguī

Literal Translation: “Crow Turtle”

Turtle in Chinese

Characters: 龟

Pinyin: Guī

Literal Translation: “Turtle”

Water Dragon in Chinese

Characters: 水龙

Pinyin: Shuǐ lóng

Literal Translation: “Water Dragon”

Insects in Chinese

Ant in Chinese

Characters: 蚂蚁

Pinyin: Mǎyǐ

Literal Translation: “Ant”

Bee in Chinese

Characters: 蜜蜂

Pinyin: Mì fēng

Literal Translation: “Honey Bee”

Beetle in Chinese

Characters: 甲虫

Pinyin: Jiǎ chóng

Literal Translation: “Shell Insect”

Butterfly in Chinese

Characters: 蝴蝶

Pinyin: Hú dié

Literal Translation: “Butterfly”

Caterpillar in Chinese

Characters: 毛虫

Pinyin: Máo chóng

Literal Translation: “Hair Insect”

Centipede in Chinese

Characters: 蜈

Pinyin: Wú

Literal Translation: “Centipede”

Dragon Fly in Chinese

Characters: 蜻蜓

Pinyin: Qīng tíng

Literal Translation: “Dragonfly”

(House) Fly in Chinese

Characters: 蝇

Pinyin: Yíng

Literal Translation: “Fly”

Grasshopper in Chinese

Characters: 蚱蜢

Pinyin: Zhàměng

Literal Translation: “Grasshopper”

Ladybird in Chinese

Characters: 瓢虫 Piáo chóng

Pinyin: Piáo chóng

Literal Translation: “Ladle Insect”

Millipede in Chinese

Characters: 千足虫

Pinyin: Qiānzú chóng

Literal Translation: “1,000 Foot Insect”

Scorpion in Chinese

Characters: 蝎

Pinyin: Xiē

Literal Translation: “Scorpion”

Snail in Chinese

Characters: 蜗牛

Pinyin: Wō niú

Literal Translation: “Snail Cow”

Spider in Chinese

Characters: 蜘蛛

Pinyin: Zhīzhū

Literal Translation: “Spider”

Wasp in Chinese

Characters: 黄蜂

Pinyin: Huángfēng

Literal Translation: “Yellow Bee”

Worm in Chinese

Characters: 虫

Pinyin: Chóng

Literal Translation: “Insect/Worm”

There you have it – learning Chinese really is that logical! Want to keep learning Mandarin? Our 10 Chinese experts will give you plenty of hints and tips for studying Chinese. Download our FREE Mandarin PDF E-Book here 👇👇👇

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