What is your avian I.Q.? Take this test and find out.



The following quiz is based on the book “100 Birds and How They Got Their Names” by Diana Wells.  A score above seven will certify that you are a genuine egghead. The answers are nested below.


1. According to Herodotus, if you killed this bird in ancient Egypt, it was punishable by death.

2. An Eastern legend says that this bird could only sing by pressing its breast against a thorn.

3. Romeo called this bird ‘the herald of the morn’.

4. Along with horses and rats, these birds have no gall bladders.

5. It is said that this bird’s breast is the result of pecking at the thorns of Christ.

6. The voice box of this bird never fully develops so that it can only hiss or whistle.

7. Long ago  sailors thought these birds were incarnations of wandering souls.

8. The common name of this bird comes from the Scandinavian word meaning ‘lame’.

9. To build a nest for this bird, one must make the diameter of the  entrance hole  one and a half inches.

10. These birds are considered to be the world’s most highly developed and adaptable of our feathered friends.




1. ibis; 2. nightingale; 3. lark; 4. pigeons; 5. robin; 6. stork; 7. albatrosses; 8. loon; 9. bluebirds; 10. crows.


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