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The less morbid terms kettle and committee are reserved for groups that are flying and resting in trees, respectively. “Sometimes they refuse to eat. Collective nouns describing hummingbirds include: a charm of hummingbirds, a troubling of hummingbirds, and a hover of hummingbirds. They'll be impressed. A "generation of vipers" likely originates from the King James translation of the Bible, in which Matthew 23:33 reads "Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell?". B has a "Blessing of Unicorns". And though their laughs and giggles sound entertaining, they're really how spotted hyenas express anger, frustration, and warnings to stay away. Perhaps the lesser-known (but still accepted) escargatoire would be more accurate. A destruction refers specifically to a group of wild or feral cats. This isn't a reference to any detective work bears may or may not do—it's derived from the Old English word for sloth, meaning slow (and sloth itself is sometimes used as a collective noun as well). 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Wombats have large brains and are incredibly playful, which is often viewed as a sign of intelligence. Sure, a herd of elephants is the more common collective, but a memory is also a recognized term. Time to retreat! You know which animals move in packs, schools, and herds, but what about a wake, a business, or a flamboyance? Two beavers would sit inside a wooden box attached to a parachute, which could be dropped from an airplane between 500 and 800 feet above their new home in the Chamberlain Basin. An exaltation of larks also dates back to the 15th century Book of Saint Albans (which, because of its heraldry section, also happened to be the first book in England to be printed in color). On a good day in the field, a birder might see a raft, a band, a host, a chime, and even a kettle. Below is a simple quiz to test your knowledge of collective nouns. A salmon run isn't just the mass migration of salmon up the river—a run of salmon is also the name of a grouping of the fish. Once Geronimo had certified the safety of the mission, the team began migrating the whole beaver population. Just one barracuda is intimidating, but a battery of them? Supposedly, a group of turtles who are cozy in their shells would look like a field of round or squarish hay bales. Since tigers tend to be solitary creatures, a grouping of them would certainly feel like an ambush. Considering scientists have only just recently begun thinking they could decipher whale calls, we'd say the gam's gammon is pretty effective. “Beavers cannot stand the direct heat of the sun unless they are in water,” department employee Elmo W. Heter explained in a 1950 report [PDF]. When people started building up the area around Idaho’s Payette Lake after World War II, its original residents began interfering with irrigation and agricultural endeavors. It will track your correct answers, incorrect answers and … A RAFT OF OTTERS. While pack is definitely the better-known term today, a very old term for wolves is rout, a word that ultimately came from the Middle French for company. Gam is a possible derivative of the word "gammon," meaning talk intended to deceive. What would you call a flock of flamingos, a swarm of swallows, or a group of eagles? They're more commonly called a herd, but a zeal or dazzle of zebras has such a nice ring to it. And when department officials checked in on the beavers a year later, they had already started improving their ecosystem. In the 15th century, crows were considered to be omens of death and messengers from the devil or evil powers. This article contains affiliate links to products selected by our editors. Different birds have different collective nouns to describe large groups, and while many of the terms are obsolete, seldom used, or just plain silly, they are still familiar to birders. For the complete list of 900+ collective nouns, please visit our homepage at collectivenounslist.com. While they can also group as a flock or a bevy, a covey of quail sounds much more poetic. There are more than a dozen fish who can be labeled "sardine" in the supermarket. Collective Nouns For Hummingbirds! They arrive with a buzz, and at breakneck speed. And because of the impression that they are an ominous presence, an unkindness of ravens can also be called a conspiracy. A muster can also be used for groups of peacocks/peafowl (though an ostentation of peacocks is much more illustrative). The fast search works for all the columns. Not terribly creative, but when in doubt, just say "a bunch" of whatever. Collective Nouns Quiz. Birders who underst… Woodpeckers are far more known for their wood-pecking style of foraging for food, but another method some have is to quickly dive-bomb anthills and termite mounds. Overall, however, the venture was deemed much safer (and less expensive) than any trip on foot would have been. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, many aquatic animals, such as … The term shiver applies a bit more to nervous humans when they see a large group of sharks, which is perhaps why the term has caught on in recent years.