"The birds are cleaning the hippo with their beaks."

Translation:Les oiseaux nettoient l'hippopotame avec leur bec.

March 29, 2018

16 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/Manuccho

Why not "leurS becS " ? I don't understand

March 29, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/CommeuneTexane

"Leurs becs" could be interpreted as each bird having more than one beak. In French, leur bec means one beak for each bird, leurs becs means multiple beaks for each bird.

EDITED: Mea culpa. It is more common in French to use the singular when each party possesses one of them "leur bec," but it is still understood to mean "one of each" if the plural "leurs becs" is used, because of common sense. Context will tell.

March 30, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/David481823

Thank you for explaining

July 3, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Camilla-danesa

Thank you, I kept getting that wrong!

July 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Shirlgirl007

So are you saying both leur bec and leurs becs are correct here? I am still confused. Common sense and knowledge being what it is...

November 1, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/JayScheuer

I believe "leurs becs" would be if the birds each had more than one beak (which is impossible).

March 27, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Brian32083

I read your edited comment stating "leurs becs" should be acceptable but my answer as such was marked incorrect. I am getting the impression that the singular, "leur Bec" applies to one beak per bird. Much of what I am learning on Duo has to do with how the French speak, think or write, which is more important,IMO, than my being right. I really appreciate Duo and the great French moderators!

April 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/David481823

That was a good question thanks

July 3, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/fallgirl123

Birds=plural, leurs becs. I do not understand, there is more than one bird, more than one beak.

July 9, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/M.parlange

you have the explanation above

August 2, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/fallgirl123

I had this earlier I commented/questioned below. However, the sentence on the TEST has hippos plural and birds is plural so beaks has to be plural. It cost me another heart.

July 9, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/pakjim

Why not 《les becs》? It is understoods that they are the birds' beaks.

September 8, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/LoriNyegaard

Her pronunciation of "leur" does not sound French. I've never heard it pronounced that way by anyone.

May 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/LucieBeauc1

It should be "leurs becs" because there are more than one bird.

August 24, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/M.parlange

please, read the comments

August 25, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Catherine362321

As there are more than one bird if we put a S at leur and bird it's right !!

April 20, 2018
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