We recently ran a show about collective nouns for groups of birds, A Murder, A Party, A Stare, Or a Siege. At the end, we asked what a group of BirdNote listeners might be called. We asked -- and you answered! Here are some of the suggestions.
LisaP and JoeMcA had the same idea. They told us a group of Bird Note listeners would be called a "pledge." (OK, so it was pledge week on a lot of local stations!)
ValerieC uses a little double-entendre, when she offers “PUPILS!”
* DouglasF noted: Birders flock together with a lot of distinct calls. "Didja see that?" "Was thatta___?" Onyer life list?" I'd call us a Gabble. It has that silly flavor of flocks rushing out to see a "rare" or "exotic," like a flock of domestic turkeys spooked by a shadow. He also offers: I think a "caucus of crows" works, specially in the fall and winter, when they gather to discuss their year and plan for the next.
* DanaD believes that a group of BirdNote listeners ought to be called a "polymathy," which, she said, "... means the discourse on the encyclopaedic knowledge of a particular subject." (And then she smiled.)
* FredK says: How about an "Ear"?
In that same vein, KLW offers “disambiguation (a medical term for ear).”
* SharonS suggests: A bevy of bird watchers (in keeping with the alliteration tradition)
* AntonyX’s idea? "A Concoction of Listeners"
* GailS offers a "celebration" of birders.
* IleneAS must be a birder herself. She nominates a "confusion" of birders!
* Miles, a listener in British Columbia, suggests, "birdnerdherd" (bird-nerd-herd). That kinda fits...
* GaryJ has a good one: a rhapsody.
* FrancesM offers A Curiosity of BirdNote listeners.
* JaneF said, a hoard of birders seems to fit.
* BobMcC got creative: Birnoculars. (Not binoculars, and birdnoculars is a bit clumsy.)
* JanelleD brings a smile: How about a "wonderment" of bird watchers.
* JudyD asks: How about Birdbrainers?
* MikeD: I would call the large group of listeners who hear BirdNote a "Fascination of listeners," as that is the word that frequently comes to mind while I listen. (We like that a lot!)
And we totally have to agree with MaryAK, who said, “Who knew birders were such a witty group!?”
We stand corrected.
AlasdairM, a native of the UK, and a couple of other fans in the US tell us that the collective noun for a group of owls -- rather than a stare --
.... is a parliament. Yup, we can see that.
There are often several names for certain groups of birds. The British term for a group of rooks is also "parliament," which seems to work, too. A group of vultures in the air constitutes a "kettle," but on the ground, a "wake." These collective nouns are meant to be fun, as well as descriptive, for sure!
Listeners also mentioned their favorite terms:
GingerH told us one of her favorite collective nouns is a charm of goldfinches.
And from far afield, RachelA says: In Australia we have gangs of cockatoos and a mob of kangaroos.
Oops, we missed one!
Full disclosure: We totally missed one of the collective nouns for crows. PeterP reminds us: Actually, if it's below the minimum number of crows for a murder, it is called an attempted murder.
Thanks, Everyone! We had fun and hope you did, too.
Thanks to these photographers for their contributions:
A spring of Blue-winged Teal - Ken Slade FCC
A murmuration of European Starlings - Kim Wall FCC
A company of parrots (Rainbow Lorikeets) - Heather FCC
A murder of crows - Will Montague FCC
Burrowing Owl - A stare? Dan Hutcheson FCC
Burrowing Owls - A parliament? © Gregg Thompson
Crows © Mike Hamilton
But wait - there's more!
BarbD says a group of BirdNote listeners is a heard. Good one, Barb!