A flamboyance of flamingos

The English language is full of surprises.

The other day I was reading about flamingos and was, well, tickled pink when I learned what a group of flamingos is called: A group of these leggy, gregarious pink birds is a flamboyant. The word “flamboyance” means “strikingly bold and showy,” a description that fits these birds to a tee.

Finding out this fun fact got me wondering about other interesting collective nouns for animals. What I found did not disappoint.

Any guesses what you call a group of lizards sunning themselves on a rock? That would be a lounge. You may be familiar with a different type of lounge lizard, too—the human variety. The term was coined in the early 1900s to refer to a man who frequents clubs and bars in search of female companionship.

A group of hippos is called a bloat. With their wide barrel shape, hippos really do look permanently bloated. A typical “bloat” in the wild would consist of one male hippo hanging out with 10 to 20 females.

One more. The next time you see a group of ducks in a pond, you’ll know that you’re looking at a raft of ducks. Quite an adorable name for these little pedaling bobbers, don’t you think?

What other unusual animal names have you heard?

By Stephanie Levis, an Editor with TalentMEDIA Services.

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