The Special Species Game

Create your own Special Species and send them in!

Special Species

Every species has its own unique scientific name that is chosen by the individual or team that discovers it. The name usually reflects something about the species itself.

Carl Linnaeus came up with the 'binomial' naming system, which means two names. Every species is known by two names - we are Homo sapiens (meaning human thinking, or wise).

You can come up with your own Special Species by combining together different latin or greek words and imagining what the species would look like and why the species might have developed those features through evolution.

There are three main ways to create your own Special Species:

1. Use our online Random Special Species Generators (scroll down!)

2. Download and print our special species card game (click here)

3. Use the power of your imagination (maybe with some guidance from our word lists)

    We would love to see your Special Species and showcase them on our website and Instagram account, @SpecialSpeciesGallery

    Here's how to send in your creation:

    1. Start at an email to learning@linnean.org
    2. Write 'My Special Species' in the Subject line
    3. Attach a photo of your work as an image file - please do not send us links to Google Drive or similar as we cannot access these.
    4. Type the following details into the body of the email:
    • The first name, age (in years) and city of the person who created the Special Species
    • The scientific and common name of your Special Species
    • A paragraph giving the reasons for its adaptations and a description of its habitat (aim for around 50 words)

    T&C: By entering, you give the Linnean Society permission to use your drawing in future Linnean Society media products, as well as share your artwork with all audiences, both online and in person. We will give appropriate credit to the creator at all times.

    Click here to follow the @SpecialSpeciesGallery instagram account.

    Random Special Species Generator

    Let's make Special Species!

    Arachna rhodobrach

    Start off with the Basic Generator. Click the button below and you'll generate three words (e.g. spider, red, arm). It's your job to draw this new species!

    Once it's drawn, give it a proper scientific name using the latin/greek words. For the example above, the words are: arach, rhodo, brachi. It's good to give it a two-part name. Ours could be 'Arachna rhodobrachi'.

    Don't be afraid to add or subtract letters to make the names sound better.

    Now you should think deeper about your special species.

    • Where does it live?
    • What does it eat and what eats it?
    • What is its life cycle?
    • Why does it have that special characteristic (e.g. a red arm)?

    The Basic Generator

    Word TypeEnglish/Latin
    Species:
    Colour:
    Body Part:

    We also have the ULTIMATE generator below for more experienced Special Species creators...

    With the ultimate generator, you are free to think deeper about what the species is that you are describing.
    You might want to only select three of the generated words to create a new species.

    The Ultimate Generator:

    Word TypeEnglish/Latin
    Kingdom:
    Environment:
    Adjective:
    Number:
    Colour:
    Body Part: