dazzle of zebras

I love this swirling video of a murmuration of Starlings. If you have three minutes, enjoy.

I’ve just spent three weeks in Africa where I saw a dazzle of Zebras, a journey of giraffes and a crash of Rhinos.­ Here is a list of some colorful names for gatherings of animals.  At the end of list, I offer a few that we made up when we couldn’t find an appropriate appellation.

Antelope                   A herd of antelope
Ant                        A colony or an army of ants
Ape                        A shrewdness of apes
Baboons                    A troop of baboons
Badger                     A cete of badgers
Bass                       A shoal of bass
Bear                       A sleuth or sloth of bears
Beaver                     A colony of beavers
Bee                        A swarm, grist or hive of bees
Bird                       A flock, flight, congregation or volery of birds
Boar                       A sounder of boars
Buffalo                    A herd of buffalo
Buck                       A brace or clash of bucks
Caterpillar                An army of caterpillars
Cat                        A clowder or clutter of cats
Cattle                     A herd or drove of cattle
Chicken                    A brood or peep of chickens
Chicks                     A clutch or chattering of chicks
Clam                       A bed of clams
Cobra                      A quiver of cobras
Cockroach                  An intrusion of cockroaches
Colt                       A rag of colts
Cow                        A kine of cows (twelve cows are a flink)
Coyote                     A band of coyote
Crane                      A sedge or siege of cranes
Crocodile                  A float of crocodiles
Crow                       A murder of crows
Cub                        A litter of cubs
Curlew                     A herd of curlews
Cur                        A cowardice of curs
Deer                       A herd of deer
Dog                        A pack of dogs
Donkey                     A herd or pace of asses
Dove                       A dule of doves
Duck                       A brace, paddling or team of ducks
Elephant                   A herd of elephants
Seal                       A pod of elephant seals
Elk                        A gang of elks
Emus                       A mob of emus
Ferret                     A business or flensing of ferrets
Finches                    A charm of finches
Fish                       A school, shoal, run, haul, catch of fish
Fly                        A swarm or business of flies
Fox                        A skulk or leash of foxes
Frog                       An army or colony of frogs
Geese                      A flock, gaggle or skein (in flight) of geese
Giraffe                    A tower of giraffes/giraffe, or groups of giraffe can be called a journey
Gnat                       A cloud or horde of gnats
Goat                       A herd, tribe or trip goats
Goldfinch                  A charm of goldfinch
Gorilla                    A band of gorillas
Goldfish                   A troubling of goldfish
Greyhound                  A leash of greyhounds
Hare                       A down or husk of hares
Hawk                       A cast or kettle of hawks
Hen                        A brood of hens
Heron                      A hedge of herons, or a dissimulation, or a siege
Hippopotamus               A bloat of hippopotamuses /hippopotami (or a raft or a  pod)
Hog                        A drift, or parcel of hogs
Horse                      A team, pair or harras of stud horses
Hound                      A pack, mute or cry of hounds
Jellyfish                  A smack of jellyfish
Kangaroo                   A troop or mob of kangaroos
Kitten                     A kindle or litter of kittens
Lark                       An ascension or exaltation of larks
Leopard                    A leap of leopards
Lion                       A pride of lion
Locust                     A plague of locusts
Magpie                     A tiding of magpies
Mallard                    A sword of mallards
Mare                       A stud of mares
Marten                     A richness of martens
Mole                       A labour of moles
Monkey                     A troop of monkeys
Moose                      A herd of moose
Mouse                      A mischief of mice
Mule                       A barren or span of mules
Owls                       A parliament of owls
Otter                      A romp of otters
Oxen                       A yoke, drove, team or herd of oxen
Oyster                     A bed of oysters
Parrot                     A company of parrots
Partridge                  A covey of partridges
Peacock                    A muster, pride or ostentation of peacocks
Penguin                    A colony, parcel or huddle of penguins
Pheasant                   A nest, nide, or bouquet of pheasants
Pigeon                     A flock or flight of pigeons
Pig                        A litter of pigs
Plover                     A wing or congregation of plovers
Pony                       A string of ponies
Porpoise                   A pod of porpoises
Quail                      A covey or bevy of quail
Rabbit                     A nest of rabbits
Rat                        A pack or swarm of rats
Rattlesnake                A rhumba of rattlesnakes
Raven                      An unkindness of ravens
Rhino                      A crash or herd of rhinos
Roebuck                    A bevy of roebucks
Rook                       A building or clamour of rooks
Seal                       A herd or pod of seals
Sheep                      A drove or flock of sheep
Snake                      A nest of snakes
Snipe                      A walk or wisp of snipe
Sparrow                    A host of sparrows
Squirrel                   A dray or scurry of squirrels
Starling                   A murmuration of starlings
Stork                      A mustering of storks
Swallow                    A flight of swallows
Swan                       A bevy, herd, lamentation or wedge of swans
Swift                      A flock of swifts
Swine                      A sounder or drift of swine
Teal                       A spring of teal
Tiger                      A swift or ambush of tigers
Toad                       A knot of toads
Trout                      A hover of trout
Turkey                     A rafter of turkeys
Turtledove                 A pitying or dule of turtledoves
Turtle                     A bale of turtles
Walrus                     A pod of walrus
Whale                      A school, gam or pod of whales
Viper                      A nest of vipers
Wolf                       A pack or route of wolves
Woodcock                   A fall of woodcocks
Woodpecker                 A descent of woodpeckers
Zebra                      A herd, zeal or dazzle of zebras

If you like a little competition, print copies of the first column of this 
list and challenge your guests to write in the names of the assemblies of 
animals.

For your amusement, here are our ‘made-up’ names for animals for which we could not find group names:

Murmarations - sparkle of meerkats

Image from scienceathawthornpbworks.com

A sparkle of meerkats (note: their group names – mob, gang or clan – are not as much fun as ours)

A prickle of porcupine

A stretch of ostrich