Mother Carey's chicken

(redirected from Mother Carey's chickens)
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Mother Car·ey's chicken

A petrel, especially a storm-petrel.

[Possibly alteration and partial translation of Medieval Latin māter cāra, Virgin Mary : Latin māter, mother + Latin cāra, feminine of cārus, dear; see kā- in Indo-European roots.]

Mother Carey's chicken

(Animals) another name for storm petrel
[origin unknown]

Moth′er Car′ey's chick′en

(ˈkɛər iz)
[1760–70; orig. uncertain]
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.Mother Carey's chicken - medium-sized storm petrelMother Carey's chicken - medium-sized storm petrel    
storm petrel - any of various small petrels having dark plumage with paler underparts
genus Oceanites, Oceanites - a genus of Hydrobatidae
References in classic literature ?
For hours together we could watch the dolphins and porpoises as they rolled and leaped and dived around the vessel; or those small creatures ever on the wing, the Mother Carey's chickens, which had borne us company from New York bay, and for a whole fortnight fluttered about the vessel's stern.
Four or five Mother Carey's chickens stormed round in circles, shrieking as they swept past the bows.
Indie pop duo Mother Carey's Chickens, already well-known in the Midlands, raised the musical bar with one of their own songs.