More Word Play

Home again, and driving the winding road up the Santa Cruz Sandhills to fetch Uschi from her friends in Bonny Doon, I turned a corner and ahead of us crossing the road were three huge wild turkeys! Naturally I stopped, then to our delight we saw the three were scooting along to join more turkeys—there were twelve wild turkeys! Big ones. Such a treat.
As I’ve been thinking about words, I said to Bill, “What, I wonder, is the collective noun for turkeys?”
Looked it up.
A rafter. Hmmm. A rafter of turkeys? What wit put that together?
We all know and love a gaggle of geese…
a flight of butterflies…
school of fish…
a pride of lions…
a parliament of owls…
an exaltation of larks…
It sent me to Wicki. For your New Year’s edification, here are more group words I find appealing, origins unknown—I do not vouch for authenticity:
an army of ants…
a congregation of alligators…also crocodiles…
a cloud of bats…
a sloth of bears…
an obstinacy of buffalos…
a pounce of cats…love that
a quiver of cobras…no, make  that a shiver
a murder of crows…or shouldn’t it be ravens, vultures?
a pod of dolphins…
a skein of ducks…so pretty crossing the sky
a convocation of eagles…oh yes
a flamboyance of flamingos…gorgeous
a scold of jays…perfect
a surfeit of skunks
a scurry of squirrels
Then in my toploftyness, I have to laugh—nay, smirk–at whomever came up with:
a shrewdness of apes
a rabble of bees…bees are too elegant to be a rabble
an intrusion of cockroaches (give me a break)
a flight of dragonflies doesn’t work—dragonflies flit…
a charm of goldfinches
a prickle of porcupines
I find the last two too cute…but may I bravely add my two cents’ worth?
bumble of bumblebees
a croaking of frogs
a darting of hummingbirds
a staring of raccoons…yes, they do that, drives you crazy
a tracery of spiders
an elegance of swans

Tell me some of your favorites!

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