Tetrapod Zoology

Identify the stuffed carnivoran

Test your skills and identify this carnivoran (sorry the image isn’t larger: this is all I got). It’s not meant to be particularly easy, so good luck. The person who supplied the image is not allowed to play, and it would be appreciated if another individual who has used the same image on his own blog refrained from spoiling things as well 🙂


I’ll publish the answer within the next day or so. Good luck.


  1. #1 Jerzy
    July 17, 2010

    Big Bad Wolf, Spheothos venaticus (sp.)

  2. #2 Brian
    July 17, 2010

    Is it a poorly stuffed *Melogale everetti*? Despite first impressions, I don’t think it is a canid. (I have to say that *Speothos* did immediately come to mind, though.) I am not particularly sure about this identification though.

  3. #3 Red
    July 17, 2010

    I’m guessing it’s a Dhole, Cuon alpinus. =)

  4. #4 John S. Wilkins
    July 17, 2010

    It’s a Rodent of Unusual Size.

  5. #5 Lynda
    July 17, 2010

    I think it’s a most unfortunate Simien jackal pup (Canis simensis).

  6. #6 johannes
    July 17, 2010

    > It’s a Rodent of Unusual Size.

    Princess-bride ROUS are sprawlers, and therefore not even therians, leave alone carnivorans 😉


  7. #7 Greg Laden
    July 17, 2010

    I like Tasmanian Devil but it can’t be because that is not a carnnivoran.

    I want to say it is NOT a canid because it looks like a canid, and I assume this is a trick question. The “aus” in the filename suggests australian, which would require that it be a dingo (which is a canid).

    Of course, the saug could be saugerties NY. The carnivores of saugerties NY are typical of the Northeastern US except there is a petting zoo nearby which has all sorts of things in it…

    It’s not a kinkajou, genet, ferret, ermine or grizzly bear.

    I would have said Amphicyonidae, but they’re all extict and shit.

    It does not have the head shape or muzzle shape to be Speothos venaticus

    Whatever it is, the genus name is longer than the species name in the binomial. Or, it has a common name with two parts, the first word being longer than the second word.

    Ok, if it’s a dog, it’s Atelocynus microtis. Yea, that’s my guess.

  8. #8 RSG
    July 17, 2010

    Canis familiaris.

  9. #9 Noni Mausa
    July 17, 2010

    Could it be a very badly stuffed Short Eared Dog, Atelocynus microtis? Except the SHDs don’t appear to have the light coloured legs and underparts. Hmmm…

  10. #10 Jamie Revell
    July 17, 2010

    ”Speotheon venaticus” was my first thought, too, on account of the short legs, but the muzzle is surely too long for that. My next thought was, like Greg’s: ”Atelocynus microtis”. The ears and muzzle shape do seem to be suggestive of that, but I’m not sure the coat colour is right. (The coat colour does, as someone else said, look rather like that of a dhole, but the head shape doesn’t look right to me).

    Of course, it could be a hybrid of some kind, assuming there’s anything ”A. microtis” can actually hybridise with. Or they just vary more than I thought! I’ll stick with ”A. microtis”, though, since I can’t think of anything better…

  11. #11 David Frayer
    July 17, 2010

    immature Bush dog

  12. #12 Lanna C
    July 17, 2010

    I’m with Red: A badly stuffed Cuon alpinus.

  13. #13 Onychomys
    July 17, 2010

    If only real life was like TV, I’d magically zoom in on the little identification sign and just read what it was. As is, I’m pretty much stumped. Those light-colored lower legs are totally confusing me. I can’t think of anything like that, and the internet is being strangely unhelpful.

  14. #14 Andreas Johansson
    July 17, 2010

    It’s quite clearly a ropenine grogonopsid. Possibly Ropen bogosus.

  15. #15 Brett Booth
    July 17, 2010

    I’m gonna say one of those domesticated silver fox(es?) from Russia. I will say this, worst.. mount.. ever;)

  16. #16 Squiddhartha
    July 17, 2010

    Rodents Of Unusual Size? I don’t believe they exist.

    Looks like a rat-dog hybrid to me…

  17. #17 Stu of the Peak
    July 17, 2010

    +1 for the Small-Eared Zorro, Atelocynus microtis. The only other candidate I can think of is the Tanuki or Raccoon Dog Nyctereutes procyonoides but the ears seem a bit small, and the coat is often longer (although that might be because it’s a slightly moth-eaten museum specimen).

  18. #18 Bill
    July 17, 2010

    Badly badly stuffed Pseudalopex sechurae, or INCREDIBLY badly stuffed Speothos venaticus

  19. #19 M. P. Marklevitz
    July 17, 2010

    Based on the incredibly poor mount I’m guessing this might be a very old, one of a kind specimen. Given the colour scheme I don’t think Bush Dog or Short-eared Zorro fit so I am going to take a wild stab and suggest perhaps Antarctic Wolf the extinct canid endemic to the Falkland Islands

  20. #20 Birger Johansson
    July 17, 2010

    African wild dog?

  21. #21 Steve Bodio
    July 17, 2010

    I’d have been with Greg Laden (devil) at first sight, badly stuffed and faded– but as he says it can’t be.

    NOT Speothos.

  22. #22 Kelly Clowers
    July 17, 2010

    All I get out of aus-saug is “SAP Australian User Group”

  23. #23 DD
    July 17, 2010

    Its either a British Big Cat or a French Little Dog?

  24. #24 jimspice
    July 17, 2010

    Thylacine pup? Maybe hasn’t developed stripes yet?

  25. #25 BlueFrackle
    July 17, 2010

    I don’t know what is, but I’ve seen this mutt around in my neighborhood. He loves a ham sandwich

  26. #26 Erika
    July 17, 2010

    It looks like it could be a badly stuffed anything 😛
    I have no idea, so I will say arctic fox with its summer coat.

  27. #27 graham
    July 17, 2010

    new guinea singing dog (perhaps hybridized with a jack russel or just badly mounted)?

  28. #28 J.S. Lopes
    July 17, 2010

    I first thought Speothos venaticus, for the short legs.

  29. #29 ambulocetacean
    July 17, 2010

    One of the Queen’s corgis. Probably the one that bit her sister.

  30. #30 Mo Hassan
    July 17, 2010

    I’ll go with Atelocynus microtis too, although the light coloration has thrown me somewhat. I also can’t help thinking maybe it’s a Dusicyon australis

  31. #31 CS Shelton
    July 17, 2010

    Haha… I was thinking corgi, too.
    Seriously though, the color of the coat looks really weird to me. I’m guessing no close relative to wolves (so dingos and singing dogs would be out), but I could be dead wrong.

    Looking up the short-eared dog, I see it’s the right build and proportion, but the coloration is way off. Is it a rare piebald specimen? And it seems impossible, but could it be hybridized with domestic dogs? The extra snout hair looks terrier-like. Ya got me, pal.

  32. #32 moom
    July 17, 2010

    Looks more like a thylacine than a tasmanian devil, but not really like that either.

  33. #33 Rob Jupp
    July 17, 2010

    I agree with comment #1. Spheothos the bush ‘dog’ from S.America. Rob Jupp

  34. #34 kittenz
    July 17, 2010

    I believe it’s a domesticated silver fox (Vulpes vulpes).

  35. #35 Squiddhartha
    July 17, 2010

    If that’s a fox, it’s the sickest-looking one I’ve ever seen.

  36. #36 neil
    July 17, 2010

    Let’s call it one of those Myanmar “gray dholes” though I kind of like the Atelocynus line of guessing too…

  37. #37 MIKE S
    July 18, 2010


  38. #38 dinosauricon
    July 18, 2010

    Falklands Island Wolf me thinks 😉

  39. #39 Wilbert
    July 18, 2010

    A short-eared dog is almost cate-like.
    This picture looks more like a bulldog (the legs) with a terrier-head.

    Short legs
    I would go for a balding raccoondog.

  40. #40 Wilbert
    July 18, 2010

    Of course it could also be a small species op Amphicyonid

  41. #41 CS Shelton
    July 18, 2010

    Mike S / dinosauricon / etc have it right, I bet. Just googled that biotch, and the Warrah / Falklands Islands Fox / Antarctic Wolf has something like the neighborhood of the right colors and build.

    Still a crappy mounting. Ugh. I think Wilbert is seeing it wrong because the specimen has short legs and is crouched, but maybe I’m seeing its deformed ass backwards myself.

    It’s all your fault, Darren! Go back in time to before it was extinct and mount it properly!

  42. #42 tdh
    July 18, 2010

    There’s a stuffed Tasmanian wolf/tiger in the zoological museum in St. Petersburg, Russia, but it has stripes on its back, IIRC, (so my memory of it as a Tasmanian devil must be wrong). Baby mammoths, too, BTW.

    Both the TW and the TD are carnivores, per my old dictionary.

  43. #43 Andreas Johansson
    July 18, 2010

    @tdh: They’re carnivores, but not carnivorans, the carnivorans being the members of unfortunately named placental order/clade Carnivora.

  44. #44 Susan Ferguson
    July 18, 2010

    It looks like one of those “chupacabras” that keep popping up on youtube.

  45. #45 Alec T
    July 18, 2010

    Yeah, my guess is Falkland Islands Wolf (Dusicyon australis)

  46. #46 andy
    July 18, 2010

    The warrah would be my guess too.

  47. #47 Cale
    July 18, 2010

    Wasn’t there a very short-legged ‘dwarf’ species of Wolf in japan that went extinct?

    I forget the species name but I’ve seen mounts of it that look incredibly similar to this, both in proportion and in quality.

  48. #48 kittenz
    July 18, 2010

    “If that’s a fox, it’s the sickest-looking one I’ve ever seen.

    Posted by: Squiddhartha | July 17, 2010 10:15 PM”

    —Well, it IS dead, after all ;-p

  49. #49 Daniel
    July 18, 2010

    Hmm, is it an immature with an adult in the background? If so, I’m going with “something with longer legs than the puppy suggests”, otherwise I’ll stick to “no comments”.

  50. #50 Nathan Myers
    July 18, 2010

    Nothing’s better than a ham sandwich. Yet, a ham sandwich is better than nothing.

  51. #51 Susan Ferguson
    July 18, 2010

    That thing is truly weird. I tried googling different canids to see if I could get a match, but nothing came close. Near as I can figure, it’s a really ugly terrier of some kind. Or maybe a mutant tazzy devil? Aside from the tazzy devil, I can’t think of any marsupial that would look like this, it doesn’t look like any pictures of thylacines that I’ve seen. I wish I could see its tail.

  52. #52 ranggaw0636
    July 18, 2010

    It’s a mutant dog

  53. #53 Duane Nash
    July 19, 2010

    Domestic dog, Canis familiaris, breed unknown- terrier?

  54. #54 Darren Naish
    July 19, 2010

    The answer is now posted here, so no more guesses. Thanks for playing 🙂

  55. #55 Phillip IV
    July 19, 2010

    Mozilla Firefox 0.8 (They didn’t get the legs right until 1.5).

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