When animals of the same species gather together, a collective name is used to describe such a group.
These specific animal group names date back to ancient times, but their hilarity is unmatched. Many animals have strange collective nouns when they gather.
Did you know that a group of crows is called a murder of crows? Did you also know that a group of ravens is called an unkindness of ravens? How odd and funny.
The funny twists in these collective nouns did not end with our ancestors as more modern hilarious twists to names for groups of animals have been added.
Heck, you can even have fun with your friends and family, creating a quiz or matching games challenging your knowledge of collective names for animals.
Below is a list of the correct collective nouns for animals, including various mammals, birds, amphibians, reptiles, fish, and invertebrates.
Animal Group Names
- Apes: A shrewdness of apes.
- Asses: A pace of asses.
- Badgers: A cete of badgers.
- Bats: A cauldron of bats.
- Bears: A sloth or sleuth of bears.
- Buffalo: A gang or an obstinacy of buffalo.
- Camels: A caravan of camels.
- Cats: A clowder, pounce or glaring of cats; For kittens (young): A kindle, litter, or intrigue of kittens.
- Cattle: A drove or herd of cattle.
- Cheetahs: A coalition of cheetahs.
- Deer: A herd or bevy (for roe deer) of deer.
- Dogs: A pack of dogs; For puppies (young): A litter of puppies; For hounds: A cry, mute, pack, kennel of hounds; For curs: A cowardice of curs.
- Dolphins: A pod of dolphins.
- Donkeys: A pace of donkeys.
- Elephants: A herd of elephants.
- Elk: A gang of elk.
- Ferrets: A business of ferrets.
- Foxes: A leash, skulk, or earth of foxes.
- Giraffes: A tower of girraffes.
- Goats: A tribe or trip of goats.
- Gorillas: A band of gorillas.
- Hippopotamuses: A bloat or thunder of hippopotamuses.
- Horses: A team or harras of horses; For colts: A rag of colts; For a group of horses that belongs to a single owner: A stud of horses; For ponies: A string of ponies.
- Hyenas: A cackle of hyenas.
- Jaguars: A shadow of jaguars.
- Kangaroos: A troop or mob of kangaroos.
- Lemurs: A conspiracy of lemurs.
- Leopards: A leap of leopards.
- Lions: A pride of lions.
- Martens: A richness of martens.
- Moles: A labor of moles.
- Monkeys: A troop or barrel of monkeys.
- Mules: A pack, barren, or span of mules.
- Otters: A romp of otters.
- Oxen: A team or yoke of oxen.
- Pandas: A pack, bamboo, bunch, cupboard, or an embarrassment of Pandas.
- Pigs: A drift or drove of pigs; For piglets (young): A litter of piglets; For swine: A sounder of swine; For hogs: A team or passel of hogs; For boars: A singular of boars.
- Porcupines: A prickle of porcupines.
- Porpoises: A pod, herd, school, or turmoil of porpoises.
- Rabbits: A colony, warren, nest, or herd (for domestic) of rabbits; For young (kittens): A litter of rabbits; For hares: A down or husk of hares.
- Rhinoceroses: A crash of rhinoceroses.
- Seals: A pod or herd of seals.
- Sheep: A drove, flock, or herd of sheep.
- Squirrels: A dray or scurry of squirrels.
- Tigers: A streak or an ambush of tigers.
- Whales: A pod, gam, or herd of whales.
- Wolves: A pack, rout, or route (when in motion) of wolves.
- Zebras: A zeal of zebras.
What is a group of birds called?
The collective nouns for a group of birds, in general, are flight (in the air), flock (on the ground), brace (for gamebirds or waterfowl killed by a hunter), or volary of birds.
- Bitterns: A sedge of bitterns.
- Buzzards: A wake of buzzards.
- Bobolinks: A chain of bobolinks.
- Chicks (different species): A brood or clutch.
- Coots: A cover of coots.
- Cormorants: A gulp of cormorants.
- Cranes: A sedge of cranes.
- Crows: A murder or horde of crows.
- Dotterel: A trip of dotterel.
- Doves: A dule or pitying (for turtle doves) of doves.
- Ducks: A brace, raft or paddling (on water), team, flock (in flight), or badling of ducks.
- Eagles: A convocation of eagles.
- Finches: A charm of finches.
- Flamingos: A stand of flamingos.
- Geese: A flock, skein (in flight), or gaggle (on the ground) of geese.
- Grouse: A pack (late season) of grouse.
- Gulls: A colony of gulls.
- Hawks: A cast, kettle (in flight), or boil (two or more spiraling in the air) of hawks.
- Hens: A brood of hens.
- Herons: A sedge or siege of herons.
- Jays: A party or scold of jays.
- Lapwings: A deceit of lapwings.
- Larks: An exaltation of larks.
- Mallards: A brace or sord (in flight) of mallards.
- Magpies: A charm, gulp, murder, or tiding of magpies.
- Nightingales: A watch of nightingales.
- Owls: A parliament of owls.
- Parrots: A company or pandemonium of parrots.
- Partridge: A covey of partridge.
- Peacocks: A muster or ostentation of peacocks.
- Penguins: A colony, muster, parcel, or rookery of penguins.
- Pheasant: A bouquet, nest, nide (for brood), or nye of pheasant.
- Plovers: A congregation or wing (in flight) of Plovers.
- Ptarmigans: A covey of ptarmigans.
- Rooks: A building of rooks.
- Quail: A bevy or covey of quail.
- Ravens: An unkindness of ravens.
- Snipe: A walk or wisp of snipe.
- Sparrows: A host of sparrows.
- Starlings: A murmuration of starlings.
- Storks: A mustering of storks.
- Swallows: A flight of swallows.
- Swans: A bevy, game, or wedge (in flight) of swans.
- Teal: A spring of teal.
- Turkeys: A gang or rafter of turkeys.
- Widgeons: A company of widgeons.
- Woodcocks: A fall of woodcocks.
- Woodpeckers: A descent of woodpeckers.
Amphibians and Reptiles
- Cobras: A quiver of cobras.
- Crocodiles: A bask of crocodiles.
- Frogs: An army of frogs.
- Toads: A knot of toads.
- Turtles: A bale or nest of turtles.
- Salamanders: A maelstrom of salamanders.
- Snakes and vipers: A nest of snakes (or vipers)
What is a group of fish called?
The collective nouns for a group of fish, in general, are a school, draft, nest, or shoal of fish. However, some authors claim that “school” is a corruption of shoal, making it incorrect.
- Bass: A shoal of bass.
- Herring: An army of herring.
- Sharks: A shiver of sharks.
- Trout: A hover of trout.
- Ants: A colony of ants.
- Bees: a grist, hive, or swarm of bees.
- Caterpillars: An army of caterpillars.
- Clams: A bed of clams.
- Crabs: A consortium of crabs.
- Cockroaches: An intrusion of cockroaches.
- Flies: A business of flies.
- Grasshoppers: A cloud of grasshoppers.
- Hornets: A nest of hornets.
- Jellyfish: A bloom, fluther, or a smack of jellyfish.
- Locusts: A plague of locusts.
- Lobsters: A risk of lobsters.
- Oysters: A bed of oysters.
- Snails: A hood of snails.
- Squid: An audience of squid.
Collective nouns provide a unique and interesting way to refer to different groups of animals.
These names, often based on the behavior or characteristics of the animals, can add a touch of whimsy and charm to our language.
From a pride of lions to a swarm of bees, these group names offer a glimpse into the fascinating world of animals and the different ways in which they interact and organize themselves in the wild.
Understanding and using these names can also help to increase our appreciation and understanding of these incredible creatures and the natural world they inhabit.