Watch the dickie bird!!! … Watch the what??
This is just one of several English idioms or idiomatic expressions (word combinations that are very different from the separate meanings of their individual words) related to birds. There are many such expressions in English which usually have little to do with the animals mentioned and which may be pigs, sheep, cows, cats, dogs, etc.
They are, of course, difficult to understand and use and can rarely be taken in their literal sense. Just try to learn a few and make your English a bit more interesting and diverse.
Here are just some of the idioms related to our feathered friends:
A piece of work by an artist, and usually the last before death or retirement.
“Her swan song was her best acting performance just before she retired.”
Someone very active at night.
“She prefers to study at night. She’s a real night owl.”
Wild Goose Chase
A search or pursuit for something that is usually useless.
“Persistent investigation into crime is often a wild goose chase.”
What’s good for the goose is good for the gander
“Whatâ€™s good for the goose is good for the gander, so if it’s useful for me it’ll be useful for the rest of us.”
Someone who may have been ugly as a child but may be handsome or beautiful as an adult.
“When she was young, she was an ugly duckling, but now she’s always surrounded by men.”
Like water off a duck’s back
Something, maybe a comment or an opinion, which goes away quickly and without serious effects.
“His scathing opinion was like water off a duck’s back. She just carried on as if nothing had happened.”
Happy English learning!!