What Is A Group Of Ducks Called? Common Names And Scientific Terms

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Learn the common names and scientific terms for a group of ducks, including flocks, braces, badlings, and more. Explore the scientific classifications of Anatidae, Aythya, Anas, Mergini, and Anatinae.

What is a Group of Ducks Called?

Common Names for a Group of Ducks

When it comes to describing a group of ducks, there are several common names that have been given to these gatherings. Each name captures a different aspect of their behavior or appearance, adding a touch of whimsy to our understanding of these fascinating birds.

  • Flock: The term “flock” is perhaps the most commonly used name for a group of ducks. It brings to mind an image of ducks moving together as a cohesive unit, whether they are flying through the sky or swimming in a pond.
  • Brace: A “brace” of ducks refers to a pair of ducks, typically a male and a female, that are seen together. This term is often used when describing breeding pairs during the nesting season.
  • Badling: A “badling” is a term that is used to describe a group of ducks on land. It gives a sense of ducks waddling together, their webbed feet shuffling along as they explore their surroundings.
  • Paddling: When ducks are swimming together in a group, they are referred to as a “paddling.” This name evokes the rhythmic motion of their webbed feet as they paddle through the water, creating a beautiful synchronized display.
  • Raft: A “raft” of ducks is a large group that is congregated on the water. This name is often used when describing ducks that are resting or feeding together, forming a floating community.

Scientific Terms for a Group of Ducks

In addition to the common names, there are also scientific terms that are used to classify and identify different groups of ducks. These terms provide a more precise and technical understanding of their taxonomy and relationships within the bird family.

  • Anatidae: The term “Anatidae” refers to the family of birds that includes ducks, geese, and swans. It is derived from the Latin word “anas,” which means duck. This scientific term encompasses a wide range of species and helps to group ducks together with their closest relatives.
  • Aythya: “Aythya” is a genus of diving ducks that includes species such as the Canvasback and the Redhead. These ducks are known for their ability to dive underwater and swim beneath the surface in search of food.
  • Anas: “Anas” is another genus of ducks that includes the Mallard, the most familiar and widespread duck species. These ducks are often seen in ponds, lakes, and rivers, and are known for their vibrant plumage and quacking calls.
  • Mergini: The term “Mergini” refers to a tribe of ducks that includes sea ducks, such as eiders and scoters. These ducks are specially adapted for life in marine environments, with features like waterproof feathers and salt glands that allow them to survive in saltwater habitats.
  • Anatinae: “Anatinae” is a subfamily of ducks that includes dabbling ducks, such as the Northern Shoveler and the Blue-winged Teal. These ducks are known for their ability to feed by “dabbling” or tipping their heads underwater while keeping their bodies near the surface.

By understanding both the common names and scientific terms for groups of ducks, we can deepen our appreciation for these remarkable birds and their diverse behaviors and characteristics. Whether they are called a flock, a brace, a badling, a paddling, or a raft, each name adds to the rich tapestry that is the world of ducks.

Common Names for a Group of Ducks


A group of ducks is commonly referred to as a flock. Just like birds of a feather, ducks often stick together in large numbers, forming a cohesive and organized community. The image of a flock of ducks gracefully gliding across a serene pond is a familiar sight to many.


Another term used to describe a group of ducks is a brace. This term is derived from the old English word “brac,” which means a pair or couple. It reflects the close bond that ducks often form with their mates, as they are known to pair up during mating season and raise their young together.


The term “badling” may not be as commonly known as flock or brace, but it is still used to describe a group of ducks. This word has its roots in the Middle English language and refers to a group of ducks swimming together. It evokes the image of ducks gracefully navigating through the water as a collective unit.


When ducks are seen swimming together in a group, they can also be referred to as a paddling. This term captures the synchronized movements of the ducks as they paddle their way through the water. Just like a well-coordinated team, ducks in a paddling often move in unison, creating a mesmerizing sight.


Lastly, a group of ducks floating together on the water is sometimes called a raft. This term draws an analogy between the ducks floating closely together and a raft made of logs or other buoyant materials. It emphasizes the unity and togetherness displayed by the ducks as they navigate their watery habitat.

Scientific Terms for a Group of Ducks


The term “Anatidae” refers to the scientific family that includes ducks, geese, and swans. These birds are characterized by their webbed feet, broad bills, and ability to swim. Anatidae is a diverse and widespread family, with over 170 species of ducks alone. They can be found in a variety of habitats, from freshwater lakes and rivers to coastal areas.


Aythya is a genus of diving ducks within the Anatidae family. These ducks are known for their ability to dive underwater to search for food. They have specialized adaptations such as dense bones and streamlined bodies that enable them to swim and dive with ease. The Aythya genus includes species like the Canvasback, Redhead, and Ring-necked Duck.


Anas is another genus of ducks within the Anatidae family. This genus is commonly referred to as the “dabbling ducks” due to their feeding behavior. Dabbling ducks feed by tipping their heads underwater and grazing on plants and invertebrates. Mallards, Teals, and Gadwalls are examples of ducks belonging to the Anas genus.


Mergini is a tribe within the Anatidae family that consists of diving ducks. These ducks are well-adapted for diving and can spend significant amounts of time underwater. They have streamlined bodies, webbed feet positioned further back on their bodies, and strong wings for propulsion. Common species within the Mergini tribe include the Common Goldeneye, Bufflehead, and Common Merganser.


Anatinae is a subfamily within the Anatidae family that includes the majority of ducks. These ducks are primarily found in freshwater habitats such as ponds, rivers, and marshes. Anatinae ducks have a diverse range of feeding habits, including dabbling, diving, and filter feeding. Mallards, Wood Ducks, and Pintails are some of the well-known ducks belonging to the Anatinae subfamily.

In summary, the scientific terms for a group of ducks encompass various levels of classification within the Anatidae family. From the broader family level to specific genera and tribes, these terms help categorize and understand the different characteristics and behaviors of ducks. Whether they are diving ducks or dabbling ducks, each group has its unique adaptations and ecological roles within their respective habitats.

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