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Animal names in Kiswahili

June 14, 2017

 Buffalo at Mdonya Old River camp in Ruaha

Leopard in Ruaha - photo by Gerard Desroches

African wild dogs in Ruaha - photo by Gerard Desroches

 

If you are thinking of visiting East Africa soon, we thought that this list of Swahili names for some of the most prominent wildlife might be useful.

 

 

Kiswahili names for East African fauna

 

Aardvark - Muhanga

African Wild Dog - Mbwa mwitu

Ant – Sisimizi/Chugu/Sungusungu

(Flying) ant - ngumbi

(Safari) ant - Siafu

Baboon - Nyani

Bat - Popo

Bat-eared fox – Mbweha masikio

Bird - Ndege

Blue Monkey - Kima

Buffalo - Nyati / Mbogo

(Lesser) Bushbaby - Komba

Bushbuck - Pongo / Mbawala

Butterfly - Kipepeo

Chameleon - Kinyonga

Camel - Ngamia

Cat - Paka

Cheetah - Duma

Chimpanzee - Sokwe

Civet - Fungo

Colobus (Black and white) - Mbega mweusi mweupe

Colobus (Red) - Mbega mwekundu

Colobus (Zanzibar Red) - Kima punju

Cow – Ng’ombe

Crocodile - Mamba

Deer - Paa

Dikdik – Digidigi

Dragonfly – Kereng’ende

Duiker - Funo

Dog - Mbwa

Dolphin - Pomboo

Donkey - Punda

Eland - Pofu

Elephant - Tembo / Ndovu

Fish – Samaki

Fly - Nzi

(Cat)fish – Kambale/Kambare

(Tiger)fish – Kange (in Selous)

Flamingo - Heroe

Gazelle  - Swala

Genet – Kala/Kanu

Giraffe  - Twiga

Goat - Mbuzi

Grant's Gazelle - Swala Granti

Guinea fowl - Kanga

Guinea pig - Sili

Hartebeest - Kongoni

Hippo - Kiboko

(Rock) hyrax – Pelele/Wibari/Kwanga/Pimbi

Horse - Farasi

(Spotted) Hyena - Fisi

(Brown) Hyena - Fisi kahawia

Hyrax - Pimbi

Impala - Swala pala

Insect - Mdudu

Jackal - Mbweha

Klipspringer - Mbuzi mawe

(Greater) Kudu – Tandala mkubwa

(Lesser) Kudu – Tandala mdogo

Leopard - Chui

Lion – Simba

Lizard - Mjusi

(Monitor) Lizard - Kenge

Mongoose – Nguchiro/Kimburu

Monkey – Tumbili

Mosquito – Mbu

Moth – Kipopo/nondo/dege

Mouse – Panya mdogo/puku

Oribi – Taya

Oryx – Choroa

Ostrich – Mbuni

Owl – Bundi/Babewana/Babewatoto/Vumatiti

Pangolin - Kakakuona

Pig – Nguruwe

Porcupine – Nungunungu

(Rock) python - Chat

Rabbit - Sungura

Rat - Panya

Reedbuck - Tohe

Rhinoceros - Kifaru

Roan antelope - Korongo

Sable antelope - Palahala / Mbarapi

Scorpion – Nge/Ng’ge/Kisusuli/Akrabu

Serval - mondo

Sheep – Kondoo

Snake – Nyoka

Spider - Buibui

Suni antelope - Paa

Squirrel – Kindi/Kidiri/Chindi/Sindi

Thompson's Gazelle - Swala tomi

Topi - Nyamera

Vervet Monkey - Tumbili / Tumbiri

Warthog - Ngiri

Waterbuck - Kuro

Wildebeest - Nyumbu

Zebra - Pundamilia

 

If you think any of these names are wrong or want to add something please contact us at info@safariadventures.club

 

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