I realise that there are huge events taking place at the moment, with the leaking of thousands of classified documents from American diplomats. Against this rather overpowering backdrop, a small victory for a smaller cause can also be reported.
As I mentioned in my previous posts, I was having some problems finding the technical term for a duck specialist. I had tried “anasist”, “anserafist” and various other permutations of the Latin names for ducks, as well as the families they occupy in the animal kingdom. I had even tried duckologist in a fit of frustration. The trusty internet wasn’t yielding any results at all.
I had also asked a good friend of mine who works for the RSPB if she knew the term. Unfortunately she didn’t, but knew a man who would. It turns out this colleague didn’t either, but he is a specialist ornithologist, so has more professional credibility in this field than I do. He has coined the term:
Anseriformes are an order of animals comprising ducks, geese and swans. Although I would love for there to be a term covering just ducks, these birds are fairly closely related, so it makes sense to have a specialism covering them all.
So there you have it. My first success in my quest to become a duck expert, or anseriformologist. There have been revelations about the Americans being pushed to attack Iran, Prince Andrew being rude, and diplomats spying on the UN leadership, but today a new word has been created and will hopefully find its way into the English language.
Anseriformologist – Noun. The (new) technical term for an expert in ducks, swans and geese.