An army of ants, a herd of cattle, and a school/shoal of fish – all these fall under the collective nouns category in the English language. But why would we be learning English today? Well, it’s not really about the language per se but addressing a commonly asked question: what do we call a group of penguins?
Interestingly, there is no straight answer to this. People describe a group of penguins depending on several factors such as age, size, and number. Not to fret, though. This article takes you through all the names you can use to correctly describe a group of these lovely birds the next time you spot one.
1. A Raft of Penguins
Penguins can survive on land and in water. As it turns out, their group has different names depending on their habitats. For instance, a group of penguins in water is called a raft.
2. A Huddle of Penguins
A huddle of penguins is mainly used to describe a group of emperor penguins who can inhabit regions with temperatures lower than -20 degrees. They usually bundle together to conserve body heat and survive harsh conditions.
The penguin at the huddle’s center usually gains body heat very quickly. To ensure everyone benefits, and no one succumbs to either high heat or low temperatures, the penguins usually move by rotating places, sending the middle to the outermost edges.
3. Crèche of Penguins
The young one of a penguin is referred to as a chick (not a surprise since penguins are birds, and they have chicks). However, when you bundle a group of chicks, you have a crèche of chicks.
4. A Colony of Penguins
Like other animals, penguins sometimes live together in large groups under a leader. With such an administrative structure, you can refer to this group of penguins as a colony.
5. Rookery of Penguins
A rookery of penguins comes from the body language of the chicks. Looking at them closely, you would think the baby penguins lack confidence based on their walking style and gesture.
6. A Waddle of Penguins
As aforementioned, whether for mating or feeding, penguins are perfect swimmers and can survive on land. Usually, they prefer standing by the shore to rest. Because of their black and white pigments, looking at them from afar might have you wondering whether you are looking at “people in tuxedos.”
Observers agree that the penguins near the shore standing or pacing up and down resemble a “group of businessmen,” hence the collective name of “a waddle of penguins.”
7. A Muster of Penguins
Though less popular, you can refer to a group of penguins as a “muster,” which means an assembly. It’s common to see these birds together for several reasons, including feeding, protection from predators, and general survival.
Other names that can describe a group of penguins include parcel, shiver, town, pride, tobogganing, and formality.
The Key Takeaway
There is no doubt that penguins are some of the most adored birds in the world. For this reason, they have many collective names. There is no shortage of options, from a waddle to a raft and crèche. You can group them by how they survive, feed, or age; your choice.
So, whether for academic or general knowledge purposes, when you are asked: “What do we call a group of penguins?” Do not fumble. You have plenty of options. If anything, when someone asks for one, give them five. You know, just because you can!