365 days = 365 animals

N Natty Public Seen by 286

As far as I understand it, we need to choose 365 animals, one to correspond to each day of the year. It's not currently clear how the finished calendar will be presented - anyone want to start a thread to discuss that rather large topic? - but in the meantime, here are some initial questions that come to mind:

  • 365 days = 365 animals. How we choose which ones to feature on the cal?

  • Do we include top-level taxonomies only (i.e. species, rather than sub-species, etc?): so for example, and eagle and a pigeon are both valid separate animals, but a Great Dane and a chihuahua would both fall under dog.

  • l found this list of the 25 most popular animals searched for on Google: http://list25.com/25-most-popular-animals-on-google-search/ - something like that seems to be as democratic a resource as any?

  • Once we have a list of animals, how should they be ascribed to the days of the year? Randomly? Associatively? Either way, we have to be careful about offending cultural sensitivities. Cows are sacred in Hinduism, for instance, and it might be taboo to pair a cow with a certain Hindu holy day. Likewise, the pig is taboo in Islam and Judaism, so having a pig paired with one of the many holy days in those religions is also likely to cause offence.


Alex Stacey Mon 4 Jul 2016 10:13AM

Lots of good points here. I agree we should be aware of cultural sensitivities regrading dates and specific animals.


Anna Carlson Tue 5 Jul 2016 2:39PM

Someone at work gave me these animal cards (in french) and when we got them all out we asked ourselves the same question, how did they pick which animals? Seemed like quite a random array (which was a fun discussion in itself, the mystery of how they were picked!)

We could create a light set of principles or rules for selection (top level taxonomies only / no rules regarding taxonomies / a certain percentage has to be on an endangered list / an even spread globally / migratory animals / silly animals etc) to start, which might help with selection of a long list, which could then be voted in some way down to our 365. In order to determine those rules, it might be good to think about what our mission is for the calendar? That might help us determine whether the rules need to be more scientific, or light hearted, or educational etc?

Or we could go really random and all throw in a long list of animals each, cross reference for duplicates and themes, then dot vote down to our final 365.


Alex Stacey Wed 6 Jul 2016 4:01PM

Those animal cards are cool!

The question of what the mission of the calendar is is an interesting one. The educational aspect of it (learning about different animals) seems like the most obvious one to me, but a light-hearted / entertainment focused one could feature more obscure and interesting animals.

What could be some other uses for an animal calendar?


Rachel Connolly Wed 6 Jul 2016 6:50PM

Hello everyone - I really like the idea of top level taxonomies only, otherwise it could get a bit messy. Then there is a clear structure to it. I also really LOVE the idea of dedicating a certain % to endangered animals, maybe these can be prioritised within their taxonomies. ,We can think about the presentation then, maybe these will be colour-coded somehow. I think that could be a really creative way to raise awareness: "my birthday is on polar-bear day. I hope there are still some left next birthday".