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A Charm of Hummingbirds
From a charm of hummingbirds to a clattering of choughs, collective nouns of animals are fascinating. How was each group name decided on? Does the group name fit the habits and characteristics of the animal?
Try to incorporate each collective noun into a story you are writing.
Charm – Any animal that is blessed with charm as a collective noun should be cute and loveable. A charm of finches or goldfinches could be crowded at your birdfeeder, while a charm of magpies fly nearby. A charm of hummingbirds would be attracted to all of the red flowers in your garden.
Chattering – A group of chicks and a group of starlings have at least one thing in common – chattering is their collective noun. Chick is slang for girl or young lady. Both girls and young ladies like to chatter or talk. So the chattering of chicks in your book or short story could easily be made up of young ladies.
Chime – The song of the friendly, sociable wren is a pleasure to hear, especially when sitting out in the early morning light. Their singing pleases our ears, just as the ringing of chimes does. Perhaps that is why a group of these sociable birds is called a chime.
Chine - A group of polecats, or skunks, is called a chine. A chine is a backbone or spine, especially of a small animal. That in no way describes a skunk, unless you are discussing the spine of the smelly animal. A chine is also a ridge or crest of land. Honestly, I believe that a group of polecats should be called a stink, as that word describes a polecat much better. Your criminal could be found by police because he inadvertently walked through a stink of polecats, who in turn sprayed their fetid fluid all over him.
Chowder – Chowder is a thick stew that contains clams or fish. Any cat would probably love to jump right into a bowl of chowder and eat its fill. A chowder of cats could bring into the open the clue that would catch the one who killed the owner of a restaurant whose specialty was chowder. A group or cluster of cats is also known as a clowder.
Clamor – Rooks are noisy birds. A rook is also a swindler. A clamor is a loud uproar or vehement expression of dissatisfaction. A clamor of rooks could either be a group of the birds or a group of swindlers.
Clash - A group of bucks is called a clash for good reason. Bucks will butt heads and clash their magnificent horns together to see who gets the rights to the sexy female they desire. A group of men, young or old, in the right situation could also be called a clash of bucks.
Clat - A clat is an irksome or troublesome task or a group of worms. When a person opens up a can of worms, it isn't a literal can of worms that is opened. He is doing or telling something that will cause trouble.
Clattering - A chough (pronounced chuhf) is a crowlike bird. These birds are noisy, perhaps that is why a gathering of them is a clattering of choughs.
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