This puzzle is part of the Monthly Topic Challenge #1: Restricted Title: xkcd 1xxx

More like Words for Sets of Small, hah!

Intrusion [3]
Aurora [2]
Consortium [2]
Sord [1]
Convocation [1]
Maelstrom [3]

What am I?

Checking your answer (Hint):

The final word is four letters long


1 Answer 1


You are a ...

... CROW.

The words in the list are ...

... collective nouns of animals:

an intrusion of COCKROACHES;
an aurora of POLAR BEARS;
a consortium of OCTOPUSES;
a sord of MALLARDS;
a convocation of EAGLES;
a maelstrom of SALAMANDERS.

It looks as if the numbers ...

... described positions. But if we take the [n]th letter from each word, we get COCMEL, which doesn't have four letters and isn't really a word.

But there's an important hint:

More like Words for Sets of Small, hah!. — The useful list of animal names also lists the names for young animals of each species:

cockroach ↠ NYMPH [3]
polar bear ↠ CUB [2]
octopus ↠ FRY [2]
mallard ↠ DUCKLING [1]
eagle ↠ EAGLET [1]
salamander ↠ LARVA [3]

The letters at the given positions in the names for the young spell MURDER.

And that's ...

... famously the collective noun for CROWS.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Correct, and a great answer to top it off too! $\endgroup$
    – Auribouros
    Jul 4, 2022 at 15:01
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Ah, I've been stuck on this one all morning, unable to find my way past your third spoiler here - very relieved you found the answer, finally I can let my mind rest! :) $\endgroup$
    – Stiv
    Jul 4, 2022 at 15:06
  • 7
    $\begingroup$ And I stumped Stiv? Wow, what an honor :) $\endgroup$
    – Auribouros
    Jul 4, 2022 at 15:12
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Thanks, @Stiv. When I saw the puzzle, I thought: easy-peasy, I know what it is and then ground to a halt at the same spot. I had an inkling what the final answer would be but couldn't see how to get there. I'm glad it wasn't a write-in; good puzzle! $\endgroup$
    – M Oehm
    Jul 4, 2022 at 15:20
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Oh, and may I suggest to add rot13(n crecyrkvba bs chmmyref) to the canon. :) $\endgroup$
    – M Oehm
    Jul 4, 2022 at 15:21

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