Why Is A Group Of Bats Called A Cauldron?

Did you know that a cauldron is not an ancient cooking implement? It’s actually a collective noun for a group of bats!

For most, bats conjure up images of darkness and spooky folklore, but there is much more to these animals than usually meets the eye. With an estimated 1,200 species of bats across the world, they are the second biggest group of mammals after rodents. In fact, 20% of all mammals on the planet were bats and they play a crucial role in their local environment.

But why is a group of bats called a cauldron? Read on to find out!

Why is a Group of Bats Called a Cauldron?

Have you ever heard of a group of bats called a cauldron?

It’s a uniquely descriptive term with an interesting history. Let’s take a look at why it’s called a cauldron, and how it applies to bats.

Bats & Cauldrons

A cauldron is a large, round container that’s used for cooking, especially in connection with medieval witchcraft.

So what does this have to do with bats? Well, if you’ve ever seen a large group of bats gathered together in one area, you know just how intimidating and mysterious it can be.

The dark shapes of the bats, seemed to swirl around in a soup-like manner similar to an old witch’s cauldron, so the name ‘cauldron’ was eventually given to large groups of bats.

History of the Term

The terms ‘Cauldron’ began to be used to describe a grouping of bats as far back as the 1800s, but the precise origin of the phrase is unclear. One theory is that it originated with military pilots in World War I, because they noticed the similarities between a group of bats flying around and the bubbling of a witch’s cauldron.

Whatever the precise origin of the term, the name ‘Cauldron’ has been applied to large groups of bats for nearly two centuries.

Types of Cauldrons

Not all cauldrons are the same; there are many different types of cauldrons out there, depending on the kind of bats involved. A maternity colony, for example, is a cauldron made up of female bats and their young.

Some cauldrons are large enough that they can be seen from the ground, while others may be made up of just a handful of bats roosting in one area.


A group of bats is often referred to as a ‘cauldron’, because of the way that they appear to swirl around like a witch’s boiling pot.

No matter the exact origin of the term, ‘cauldron’ is the perfect way to describe the mysterious and intimidating sight of a group of bats. Citations: https://www. worldatlas. com/articles/what-is-a-cackle-of-bats. html https://www. audubon. org/news/the-mysterious-world-bats https://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Cauldron

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