New York

You’ll have to wait until 2016, but you will be able to tell your friends you feel sick with one simple picture.

The vomiting emoji is one of 38 new characters announced by Unicode. Other proposed emoji include a cowboy, a drooling face and a scooter. The new characters are also set to address ‘unpaired gender specific emoji’, so we will get a prince (to complement the princess), Mother Christmas (to join Father Christmas) and a man dancing.

There will also be emoji to represent a handshake, a shrug and a selfie. One design option for the selfie is just a hand holding a phone, facing forward. The 9.0 update, which would include these new additions, is expected to be released in June next year. Six new animals have been suggested; fox face, eagle, owl, duck, bat and shark.

There are also six food items on the list; potato, avocado, bacon, cucumber (which is also intended to represent pickle), carrot and croissant (described on the Unicode list as a ‘popular food item in France and other European countries). Some of the emoji were selected because they have been frequently requested by users. Others are there to reflect existing characters used on platforms such as Yahoo Messenger.

‘For bird emoji specifically, Cornell University Lab of Ornithology was consulted,’ said Unicode. The department, a world-leader in bird research, also investigates the birds that users most want added to the emoji dictionary.

According to Unicode: ‘The list of Cornell’s Lab of Ornithology top desired bird emoji are (in order): dove, owl, chicken, eagle, crow, crane, stork, peacock, robin or bluebird, hummingbird, duck, pheasant, magpie, hawk and turkey.’ Earlier this week it was revealed that emoji is now the fastest growing language in the UK and evolving faster than ancient forms of communication, such as hieroglyphics.

That claim came from Professor Vyv Evans of Bangor University, who is studying the ‘speed of evolution’ in the use of the little icons instead of words. ‘As a visual language emoji has already far eclipsed hieroglyphics, its ancient Egyptian precursor which took centuries to develop,’ he said.