North American Bird-Named Teams

Guess the Major League, NBA, NFL, and NHL teams that are named for birds.
Guess the team name, not the city.
Quiz by Quizmaster
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Last updated: November 21, 2018
First submittedFebruary 10, 2012
Times taken56,042
Average score66.7%
Rating4.35
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NFL
Arizona Cardinals
Atlanta Falcons
Baltimore Ravens
Philadelphia Eagles
Seattle Seahawks
Major League
Baltimore Orioles
St. Louis Cardinals
Toronto Blue Jays
NBA
Atlanta Hawks
New Orleans Pelicans
NHL
Anaheim Ducks
Pittsburgh Penguins
+5
Level ∞
May 16, 2013
Updated because the New Orleans Hornets became the Pelicans.
+4
Level 84
May 16, 2013
Why did the hornets become the pelicans? They decided that hornets were too cool and they wanted something much dumber? Did they announce this on April 1 by any chance?
+20
Level 83
May 16, 2013
Louisiana is the pelican state. The Hornets were named for Charlotte being a "hornets' nest of rebellion" during the American Revolution. Charlotte even has a hornets' nest on its city seal.
+2
Level 76
Jun 6, 2013
I have also heard that the Charlotte Bobcats want to be the Charlotte Hornets again, so it works out. Some of the New Orleans suggested names were hilarious. My favorite...New Olreans Rougarou, which are warewolf like creatures from old French Louisiana folklore. Sorta B.A. if you ask me.
+3
Level 87
Jul 17, 2018
They wanted to establish an assertive, proud image of the city after Katrina, so they chose a mentally challenged animal that mills about sportfishing piers stealing bait. ...And swallows live pigeons on YouTube.
+1
Level 54
Mar 16, 2022
You thought they were the New Orleans Hornets, but NOPe.
+10
Level 49
Aug 21, 2013
Raptors? I know their logo is a dinosaur, but a raptor is actually a bird.
+4
Level 78
Mar 16, 2014
I fully expected to see Raptors as well.
+7
Level 28
Dec 1, 2014
Well, in the Toronto Raptors case, they are named for the dinosaur. Not the type of name used to describe a "bird of prey"
+5
Level 72
Aug 14, 2018
Well, birds are just modern dinosaurs, after all.
+4
Level 66
Feb 14, 2019
But that wasn't known at the time the team was named. They're explicitly named after the dinosaur, which is explicitly designed after the older, more lizard-like conception of dinosaurs.
+2
Level 68
Mar 14, 2022
It was known at the time of the movie...it was a concept that became fairly common in the paleontology community by the 1960s or so.

What's funny about the movie is that the "raptors" are actually not velociraptors. They are deinonychus--a much smaller, feathery dinosaur. This was supposedly due to a labeling error in a dinosaur book. They had no choice but to run with their error after it was discovered.

I was more curious to see where the Flyers and Red Wings would come into play.

+1
Level 73
Apr 11, 2022
The labeling of birds as dinosaurs is actually a recent thing. Prior to that, paleontologists had only said that birds were descended from dinosaurs.

As for the movie, I'm guessing you're referring to Jurassic Park. Those aren't Deinonychus either, which are actually larger than velociraptors, but nowhere near that large. The ones in the movie are more like Utahraptors in size.

+3
Level 64
Jan 7, 2014
Took me forever to figure out why Thrashers wasn't working...guess I haven't watched the NHL in a while.
+11
Level 73
Sep 2, 2016
Nobody in Atlanta has noticed yet.
+2
Level 41
Sep 15, 2014
Yeah turns out Thrashers are now Jets, forgot for a while about Pelicans and completely missed Ducks yet I live by a duck pond.
+2
Level 66
Feb 5, 2015
Which is a man-made bird :p.
+5
Level 68
Feb 14, 2019
jets... he means the jets
+1
Level 17
Mar 12, 2015
i totally forgot about the pelcians and im not a hockey fan so i didnt get ducks
+2
Level 60
Dec 8, 2015
Nice Portlandia reference, Quizmaster...
+1
Level 60
Dec 8, 2015
The entire reason I tried the quiz :)
+1
Level 48
Dec 8, 2015
only missed seahawks!
+2
Level 60
Dec 8, 2015
As someone who knows exactly zero about professional sports, I take a strange pride in missing the top three and getting the rest!

(Except for the Pelicans. Ain't nobody got Pelicans.)

+4
Level 43
Dec 15, 2015
I got the pelicans:)
+3
Level 43
Dec 8, 2015
Seahawks should've ran the ball
+1
Level 73
Sep 2, 2016
Ironically, yes.
+4
Level 83
Mar 28, 2017
I believe you meant that the Seahawks should have "run" the ball, but I digress.

Marshawn Lynch, for the 2015 seaons, was 1-of-5 running the ball from the 1-yard line. There was no guarantee he was going to score, especially with the Patriots going jumbo down on the goal line.

Carroll's decision to throw on that down allowed the Seahawks 1 extra play, given their timeout situation. From a clock management stand point, throwing the ball was the right call. A better play may have been a fade to the corner of the end zone, where either only the WR can get it, or it goes out of bounds.

But that play ended up in an interception not because it was such a risky play, but because Malcom Butler was so well coached. Even with him making the correct read and breaking on the ball, if Wilson throws that ball lower and to the WR's back hip, no problem. It was simply an amazing play by a VERY well-coached rookie.

+1
Level 78
Sep 10, 2018
I totally disagree, and I'm right, because hindsight is 20/20.
+1
Level 68
Mar 14, 2022
Or how about a play-action bootleg?
+1
Level 73
Mar 27, 2022
They could have run three plays with the time and timeouts they had. Because, also, give Brady as little time as possible.
+2
Level 58
Dec 8, 2015
Know pretty much nothing about sports teams, but thankfully I know a lot about birds!
+3
Level 58
Dec 9, 2015
Rams and Sharks are not birds? Come on!
+1
Level 71
Jun 16, 2016
Let's not insult their play.
+1
Level 66
Apr 7, 2017
LETS GO O'S
+5
Level 61
Aug 24, 2017
um... Black Hawks?
+7
Level 66
Feb 14, 2019
Chicago's hockey team is several degrees of separation from being named after a bird. The team is named after a military unit from World War I nicknamed the "Black Hawks," who were in turn named after a Native American of the Sauk tribe of what is now Illinois, named Black Hawk, who was presumably named after the bird. A bit confusing, but I'd say the hockey team definitely does not qualify as named after a bird.
+1
Level 41
Nov 25, 2017
As a person living in North Dakota, I am upset that the Larks aren't here
+5
Level 84
Sep 10, 2018
I still think the Blackhawks should count. I know that the team is named after an infantry division. But that infantry division was named after a Native American man. And that Native American man was named after a bird. The mascot of the team is Tommy Hawk... an anthropomorphized bird. Not a platoon of WW1 soldiers. We all know what a hawk is. This is like that silly controversy on the quiz about cities named after saints where Santiago was taken off because Santiago, Chile was named after some other city but that city was still named after Saint James.
+2
Level 66
Feb 14, 2019
The Blackhawks shouldn't count for the same reason the Raptors shouldn't count, because they aren't named after birds. If the quiz was looking for teams "with birds in the names" then I'd agree, but "named for birds" they are not.
+4
Level 84
Apr 7, 2019
The bird is the original namesake of the Blackhawks, going back through the chain of custody I described. The raptors are different, though, technically, birds are dinosaurs.
+4
Level 66
Apr 7, 2019
red·wing

/ˈredwiNG/

noun

noun: redwing; plural noun: redwings; noun: red-wing; plural

noun: red-wings

1.

a small migratory thrush that breeds mainly in northern Europe, with red underwings showing in flight.

2.

any of a number of red-winged birds, especially the American red-winged blackbird.

+3
Level 77
Apr 7, 2019
Their logo is a winged wheel - not a bird. It's a nod to their hometown of Detroit, Motor City.
+1
Level 68
Mar 14, 2022
Not all answers depicted on this quiz match their team's logo. The Ducks' logo is a webbed "D." The Eagles' is a wing, etc. The redwing is in fact a bird (as indicated by mightythor). The fact that they tossed in a wheel shouldn't matter.
+3
Level 65
Apr 8, 2019
The Detroit Red Wings were named in honor of the first-ever Stanley Cup winning team, the Winged Wheelers, on which the new owner (in 1932) played. They are named in honor of Detroit's auto industry and that 1893 team, not a bird.
+1
Level 72
Apr 8, 2019
Why isn't blackhawks included?
+1
Level 65
Apr 8, 2019
"The National Hockey League's Chicago Blackhawks was named in honor of the U.S. 86th Infantry Division, which was nicknamed the "Blackhawk Division" after Black Hawk, a Native American chief; the team's founder, Frederic McLaughlin, having served in that division." (source: Wikipedia)
+5
Level 84
Apr 11, 2019
and this Black Hawk guy must have been named after the act of clearing phlegm from your throat. He probably drank a lot of cocoa and hawked up some nasty dark loogies. Thus, black hawk. Because if his name had something to do with a bird it wouldn't make sense to exclude the team from the quiz.
+1
Level 56
Apr 8, 2019
Turns out you need to know the history (arcane though it may be) to answer this quiz correctly.The BlackHawk is a bird and so is the redwing. And they were birds before the teams were formed and so they were named "after" the birds. Maybe they weren't named "for" the birds, but clearly they were named after the birds were.If this sounds like nit-picking I can only say, you started it! :)
+4
Level 52
Aug 21, 2019
Raptors should really be on here because raptors are birds too not just dinosaurs!
+1
Level 64
Jun 12, 2021
Definitely agree that they should add Raptors
+1
Level 54
Dec 9, 2019
When in doubt, resort to comments. Somehow i forgot about the seahawks even though I had a teacher who was a seahawks fanatic and i somehow forgot the ducks even though my mom has been a die-hard fan... lol
+3
Level 73
Feb 14, 2022
Bird-like answers: Jets (2x), Raptors, Blackhawks, Red Wings.
+1
Level 66
Mar 14, 2022
Orioles more guessed than penguins and ducks? I suspect that's more down to the popularity (or lack of) the sport, rather than the bird? I was trying Sea Eagles for ages and it wouldn't accept, but that's Manly Sea Eagles, in the NRL.
+2
Level 57
Mar 14, 2022
What do you mean there's no such thing as the Detroit Dodos?! I feel cheated :(
+2
Level 47
Mar 14, 2022
Chicago Blackhawks?
+1
Level 67
Mar 16, 2022
Was going to say the team is named after a Native American tribe, but wasn't sure, so I looked it up. I'm glad I did.

The team's original owner commanded an infantry division called the Black Hawks that fought in the first World War. The military unit is what the team is named after.

That unit was named after Black Hawk, a Sauk war chief, who fought alongside the British in The War of 1812 and later against white settlers in what's now Illinois and Wisconsin. That was called Black Hawk's War. You've gotta be pretty formidable to have a war named after you.

He was named after a bird though.

+1
Level 47
Mar 14, 2022
What about Toronto Raptors?
+1
Level 36
Mar 16, 2022
There really is a team called Red Wings? I put that in as a dirty joke.
+1
Level 65
May 16, 2022
why isn't anyone named after my favourite bird family, the tit.

Wouldn't it be fun if a team was called Charlotte Tits. It would be the greatest team of South Carolina

+1
Level 18
Jun 13, 2022
thank you for the new ranking, splaaaash