When I was a child, I devoured all sorts of information, useless and useful, fascinating and annoying for everyone around me. I constantly referred to the book 'The Students’ Companion'… way before google and smartphones. In line with our safari theme, allow me to share some funny, interesting, weird and downright apt collective nouns for animals and birds:
We created this list to make you forget about Covid-19 for a few moments and hopefully smile! Feel free to comment and share …..
Apes: a group of apes is a shrewdness. And boy are they shrewd!
Alligators: a congregation
Baboons: a troop. All that’s needed is a captain to shout out orders. Oh wait, they kinda already do have a leader in the troop.
Bees: a bike, swarm, colony, nest. Yes, you read right, a bike of bees! Bike is an old English word that means colony, swarm, or nest.
Butterflies: a group is a kaleidoscope or a rabble. I prefer kaleidoscope… it is such a descriptive word for lots of butterflies in one area.
Bats: a cauldron… the darkness, the noise, the chaos….. yep, recipe for a witch’s brew.
Buffalo: a gang or obstinacy. Have you ever seen a herd of buffalo… they DO look like an obstinate gang that refuses to shift, until they are ready.
Cats: a glaring. Oh my goodness, anyone who has ever been at the receiving end of a cat glare will understand this one. One cat glaring at you can freak you out…more than one. Find a hex!
Caterpillar: an army. Just imagine their little feet: Left. Right. Left. Right
Camels: a caravan, or train, and when you see them move, this collective noun will make absolute sense.
Cheetah: a coalition
Cobra: a quiver. I would not be comfortable near a quiver of cobras. One is more than enough.
Cockroaches: an intrusion. All the time, any time. One is an intrusion. I don’t need a confirmation of how intrusive I find them.
Crocodiles: a float/nest … oh yes, and not like a carnival float. Have you ever watched how they move in the water….?
Dolphins: a pod, school, team. They work as a team. They play like school children having a good time. They are just fun happy animals.
Dogs: a Cowardice of dogs/litter. I don’t get this collective term, cowardice, but that’s what it is.
Donkeys: a drove, pace. Makes me think of donkeys hitched to a cart.
Elephants: a herd, a memory and boy do they have a long memory. Elephants never forget.
Ferrets: a business or busy-ness, and they DO get busy!
Frogs: army… with sound effects too.
Flamingos: flamboyance, stand, a flock. When a flock is gathered they are flamboyant in every sense of the word.
Flies: business, because they always want to be busy in your food and drink and conversation business.
Giraffe: a tower…. Well…. What else could they be?
Hippopotamus: a bloat or thunder of hippo… both descriptive and appropriate
Ibis (hadeda): congregation, stand, wedge. Speaking of, have you ever heard a hadeda’s call? Especially early in the morning.
Jellyfish: smack , brood
Lions: a pride. They are proud, they look proud. They are a pride.
Monkeys: a tribe
Nightingales: a watch. Better than alarm. Their singing voices are beautiful.
Otters: the collective nouns for otters are bevy, family, lodge, romp (being descriptive of their often playful nature) or, when in water, raft
Pangolin: also known as an anteater- a group is called a candle
Platypus: largely solitary so no accepted collective noun, but a paddle of platypus is acceptable
Porcupine: a pickle of porcupines. Avoid the pricks!
Quails: A group of quails is a covey.
Rhinoceros: a crash
Ravens: an unkindness. Ravens are a type of crow, they make a thrill annoying sound, and perhaps that’s why their collective name is “unkindness”
Sharks: a shiver…. Because you shiver when you encounter more than one?
Tortoises: A group of tortoises is called a creep. Not to be confused with turtles, as a group of them are known as a bale, turn, dole, or nest.
Vultures: group of vultures is called a wake. Enough said.
Woodpeckers: a descent, a gatling, and whirlgust
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