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Flocks, Herds and...

Flocks, Herds and...

Flock is applied to a congregation of animals of one kind, especially sheep or goats herded by people, and to any congregation of wild or domesticated birds, especially when on the ground. It is also applicable to people who form the membership of a church or to people under someone's care or supervision. 


Herd is used of a number of animals, especially cattle, herded by people; or of wild animals such as antelope, elephants, and zebras; or of whales and seals. Applied to people, it is used disparagingly of a crowd or of the masses and suggests the gregarious aspect of crowd psychology. 


Drove is used of a herd or flock, as of cattle or geese, that is being moved or driven from one place to another; less often it refers to a crowd of people in movement. 


Pack is applicable to any body of animals, especially wolves, or of birds, especially grouse, and to a body of hounds trained to hunt as a unit. It also refers disparagingly to a band or group of persons. 


Gang refers to a herd, especially of buffalo or elk; to a pack of wolves or wild dogs; or to various associations of persons, especially when engaged in violent or criminal pursuits. 


Brood is applicable to offspring that are still under the care of a mother, especially the offspring of domestic or game birds or, less formally, of people. ·


The following related terms used of specific animals or animal movements:

bevy, a company of roe deer, larks, or quail

cast, the number of hawks or falcons cast off at one time, usually a pair

cete, a company of badgers

covert, a flock of coots

covey, a family of grouse, partridges, or other game birds

drift, a drove or herd, especially of hogs

exaltation, a flight of larks

fall, a family of woodcock in flight

flight, a flock of birds in flight

gaggle, a flock of geese

gam, a school of whales, or a social congregation of whalers, especially at sea

kennel, a number of hounds or dogs housed in one place or under the same ownership

kindle, a brood or litter, especially of kittens

litter, the total number of offspring produced at a single birth by a multiparous mammal

murder, a flock of crows

muster, a flock of peacocks

nide, a brood of pheasants

pod, a small herd of seals or whales

pride, a company of lions

rout, a company of people or animals in movement, especially knights or wolves

school, a congregation of fish, or aquatic mammals such as dolphins or porpoises

shrewdness, a company of apes

skein, a flight of wildfowl, especially geese

skulk, a congregation of vermin, especially foxes, or of thieves

sloth, a company of bears

sord, a flight of mallards

sounder, a herd of wild boar

stable, a number of horses housed in one place or under the same ownership

swarm, a colony of insects, such as ants, bees, or wasps, especially when migrating to a new nest or hive

troop, a number of animals, birds, or people, especially when on the move

warren, the inhabitants, such as rabbits, of a warren

watch, a flock of nightingales

wisp, a flock of birds, especially of snipe


Flocks, Herds and...