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This is a list of types of animals that have appeared in SpongeBob SquarePants. Most of the show's characters are based on real-life sea creatures, but only a few of the characters' exact species/scientific names have been revealed.
- 1 Sponges
- 2 Mollusks
- 3 Crustaceans
- 4 Single-celled organisms
- 5 Echinoderms
- 6 Limbless creatures
- 7 Fish
- 8 Jellyfish
- 9 Mammals
- 10 Birds
- 11 Reptiles
- 12 Fictional species
SpongeBob SquarePants and his family are sea sponges. In real life, sea sponges cannot walk or swim on their own, so they eat by filter-feeding (straining the surrounding water for nutrient particles). Many sea sponges reproduce by "budding," which is when a portion of the sponge breaks off and becomes a complete animal.
There are many species of sea snails in real life. In the series, the sea snail is the underwater equivalent to a cat. The most notable is Gary the Snail. Others include Snellie the Snail, Annette, and a variety of one-time characters.
"Whelk Attack" features whelks, a type of sea snail, as big ravenous beasts. They later turn out to be small and friendly after SpongeBob helps cure them of a disease.
In the series, clams take the place of animals such as wolves, as they are sometimes shown howling ("Texas") and attacking people ("Tea at the Treedome"). The most notable clam is the giant clam Old Bluelip from the episode "Clams."
Other clams who have appeared on the show are the giant clam from "Tea at the Treedome," the clams from "Texas," the clam from "Porous Pockets," and the clams from "No Free Rides." An owl clam appears in "One Krabs Trash."
Scallops are depicted as the underwater equivalent to birds. They resemble clams but are much smaller in size. Shelley, SpongeBob's pet scallop, appears throughout the show in his bedroom. Another notable scallop is Junior from "Rock-a-Bye Bivalve." Other scallops who have appeared are Mr. Krabs' former pet scallop, the scallops whom SpongeBob kills in "To Love a Patty," and the scallops from "One Krabs Trash."
Clamu is a notable pearl oyster who performs at the Bikini Bottom Zoo, as shown in "The Smoking Peanut." Oysters can also sometimes be used as food, such as in "Squidville," where Patrick is mentioned to have eaten fried oyster skins.
Octopuses are an order of cephalopods. Squidward, one of the main characters, is an octopus. The octopus is closely related to the squid, which (unlike Squidward) has a cone-shaped head with fins on each side, and has ten limbs. The character was named "Squidward" instead of "Octoward" because the second name "just didn't work," according to Rodger Bumpass.
The Tentacles family and most of the other cephalopods are octopuses. Other octopuses who appear are Squilliam, Squilvia, and some of the members of the Cephalopod Lodge. Different species of octopuses make occasional appearances, such as a octopus mother and her children from "Sailor Mouth," and a dancer from "Slimy Dancing." The only species allowed in Tentacle Acres are octopuses.
Squids are another order of cephalopods. The most notable examples are Incidental 11, a common background character, and Squidina. Some squids, in addition to octopuses, appear in the episode "Cephalopod Lodge" because they are cephalopods. Another squid appears in "Jailbreak!" as one of Plankton's inmates.
Every species under this section is related by Class.
Other crabs include The Penny Pinchers, The Wise Old Crab and the other crabs from the video games Nicktoons: Battle for Volcano Island and SpongeBob SquarePants featuring Nicktoons: Globs of Doom, Mr. Krabs' double, and the Yeti Krab.
Hermit crabs have also appeared in the series. The most notable is the Sneaky Hermit, who appeared in the video game Lights, Camera, Pants! and the episode "Life of Crime." The other crab also appears in "Life of Crime," where he is a victim in a fake thievery on a show called Crustacean Crime Theater.
Sheldon J. Plankton is a planktonic copepod. Other plankton include the members of Plankton family who appeared in "Plankton's Army," Sheldon's grandmother who appeared in Gramma's Secret Recipe, Plankton's grandfather and other ancestors in "One Coarse Meal," Planktonamor from "Dunces and Dragons," Dead Eye Plankton from "Pest of the West," and Papa Plankton from the book Hooray for Dads!.
Lobsters are a family of crustaceans. Several lobsters have appeared in the series: Larry the Lobster in "Ripped Pants" and various later episodes, Federico the Waiter in Employee of the Month, and the lobster who works at Fin Locker in The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie video game.
A shrimp makes a brief appearance in "The Algae's Always Greener." There is also a villain based on the species called Jumbo Shrimp. Brine shrimp, called "sea monkeys," appear in "Not Normal," "Plankton's Pet," "The String," and "King Plankton."
Johnny Krill is the most notable of the order.
This class contains most of Patrick's family. The most notable is Patrick Star. The only other starfish that have appeared in the series besides the Starfish in Patrick's family are Janet and Marty from "I'm with Stupid", the starfish who mistakenly crowned Patrick king of Bikini Bottom in "Rule of Dumb", a few starfish at Shell City in The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie, and Patrick Not-Star from Hide and Then What Happens?.
The show depicts sea urchins as the underwater equivalent of bugs/cockroaches. They appear in "Nature Pants," "Your Shoe's Untied," and "Eek, an Urchin!" A larger, talkative variety of sea urchin appears in "Squidward's School For Grown-Ups."
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In the SpongeBob universe, nudibranches resemble small cute fish, which can evolve into huge, monstrous and dangerous creatures when in the prescience of other pets which they hate, Puffy Fluffy being a notorious example. In reality, nudibranches are sea slugs and look nothing like the aforementioned.
Eels are an order of ray-finned fish. They occasionally appear in the series. This includes the brown eel that appears in "Your Shoe's Untied," the electric eel in various episodes, and the golden eel in "The Curse of the Hex." They were mentioned in the episode "Sailor Mouth" when the game Eels and Escalators is played.
Mrs. Puff is one of the main characters of the series. She is a pufferfish: specifically a porcupinefish. The only other known pufferfish are her deceased husband, Mr. Puff, her ancestor Polene Puff, and an unnamed pufferfish at Shell City in The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie.
Anchovies, in the SpongeBob universe, are known for making sounds like "meep", though can speak English as well. They are notorious around the Krusty Krab for gathering in large schools for food, nearly destroying the restaurant in the pilot episode.
A family of sharks is seen in "SpongeGuard on Duty." Notable sharks include Sharkey Two-Times from SpongeBob Diner Dash 2, Seymour Scales from SpongeBob's Boating Bash, and Sergeant Sam Roderick from "Mrs. Puff, You're Fired." A shark also appears in Kenny the Cat, being ridden by its titular character. A group called the Sharks play a big role in "Sharks vs. Pods".
A hammerhead shark citizen appears as a background character. Another more realistic hammerhead shark makes a quick appearance in "Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy." Sharkface and Gill Hammerstein from Lights, Camera, Pants! is also this species.
Contrary to real-life standards, the lionfish is depicted as a fish with a lion's head and claws. One appears in "Spongicus," set to attack Patrick who has sausages around his neck, but ends up attacking Plankton instead.
Jellyfish are a subphylum. In the show, they are commonly known to represent bees, due to their stings and jelly. There are known to be Queen Jellyfish just like bees, however there are King Jellyfish as well. The species are involved in the practice of jellyfishing. While pink is the most common color of a jellyfish, they can come in different physical appearances and species.
The series features a sperm whale, Pearl, as one of the main characters. Various other sperm whales have appeared on the show, with their designs based on Pearl's.
Sandy Cheeks, a squirrel, is one of the main characters. Squirrels are a family of rodents. This is the species that most of the Cheeks family is. Other squirrels include, The Dark Knight, Pa Cheeks, Randy Cheeks, Western Cheeks, Rosie Cheeks, Ma Cheeks, and Sandy's Scottish cousin.
The most notable human in the show is Patchy the Pirate. Other humans include David Hasselhoff, Mrs. Johnson, Davy Jones, Mr. Pirateson, Burger Beard, The Cyclops, Patchy's party guests in Party Pooper Pants, the children at the playground in "The Sponge Who Could Fly," and the unnamed pirates from The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie.
In Patty Hype, a restaurant called the Shell Shack is told to have a talking dog, but the people of Bikini Bottom have no idea what dogs are. There's also Plankton's labrador (as a pun) seen in "Plankton!". The "pie dragon" appears in "SpongeBob's Big Birthday Blowout".
A gorilla appears in "I Had an Accident" and "Friend or Foe." In the former episode, Patrick is shown to own a gorilla costume. A gorilla costume is also shown in "Boating Buddies." A gorilla is also seen in the audience for Ned and the Needlefish in "Hello Bikini Bottom!"
A live-action giraffe appears in "Krusty Krab Training Video", when the narrator asks for a graph.
Pelicans appear sporadically throughout the franchise. In Stephen Hillenburg's original pitch bible for SpongeBob, a pelican and an elephant seal were planned to be host characters. In The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water, a pod of pelicans is seen at Pelican Island.
The only Tyrannosaurus Rex that appears is the one at the end of "Ugh."
It is the only species in its Genus and its tribe.
- Merpeople - Mermaids appear throughout the show, including Princess Mindy from The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie and the mermaids from "Welcome to the Bikini Bottom Triangle."
- Sea bears - The underwater equivalent to surface bears. One first appears in "The Camping Episode."
- Sea chicken - Mr. Sea Chicken from "The Masterpiece" is a sea chicken. They look like normal chickens. In "Code Yellow," there is a medical sea chicken who appears when SpongeBob asks for one.
- Sea rhinoceros - A rhino-like fish that appears in "The Camping Episode."
- Snow mollusk - An abominable snow mollusk appears in "Frozen Face-Off." It is a fictional mollusk with traits similar to real-life cephalopods.
- Jellybee - The underwater equivalent of bees, appears in "FarmerBob" when Patrick tries to shoo it away and SpongeBob ends up getting stung by it.
- Jellycow - The underwater equivalent of cows, they appear in "FarmerBob" when SpongeBob tries to get jelly from one, only to get sprayed in the face.
- Worm hog - The underwater equivalent of pigs, they appear in "FarmerBob" when SpongeBob and Patrick feed them.