Yesterday's Post-Dispatch newspaper had an interesting article about crow levels returning to normal after a big die-off from West Nile virus. Not everyone is happy about it, though. Halfway down the page I read:
Few people are crowing about the return of crows. The birds have an image problem. A flock of jays is called a “party,” a group of sparrows is a “host.” But a flock of crows is a “murder.”I've heard of a herds, a prides, and flocks to describe groups of animals. But parties, hosts, and murders? Quite curious. I decided to do some research to see if there were any other unusual animal assemblages. It didn't take me long to find an awesome Website from the Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center that had a very thorough list naming animal congregations, which were divided into Mammals, Birds, Reptiles and Amphibians, Fish, and Invertebrates.
Some of them are really offbeat. Did you know that groups of:
- Cockroaches are intrusions
- Flies are businesses
- Eagles are convocations
- Ferrets are businesses
- Frogs are armies and toads are knots
- Giraffes are towers
- Hippopotami are bloats
- Kangaroos are troops
- Kittens can be litters, kindles, or intrigues, but adult cats are clowders or pounces.
- Moles are labors
- Otters are romps
- Peacocks are musters or ostentations
Five years ago today: New Thing #44--Nice to Meet You