bird of paradise

(redirected from Bird of Paradise flower)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus.

bird of paradise,

common name for any of 43 species of medium- to crow-sized passerine birds of New Guinea and the adjacent islands, known for the bright plumage, elongated tail feathers called wires, and brilliant ruffs of the males. Their common name is derived from 16th-century Spanish explorers, who believed them to be visitors from paradise. The standard-winged bird of paradise, Semioptera wallaceii, is brownish with a glimmering green gorget at the throat. At the end of the 19th cent. over 50,000 bird of paradise skins per year were exported; many species were almost wiped out. It is now illegal to import skins into the United States. The 13-in. (32.5-cm) twelve-wired bird of paradise, Seleucidis ignotus, is found in mangrove swamps, and has brilliant yellow plumes and an iridescent green and black throat, which are displayed to the female during courtship. The smallest member of the family is the scarlet king bird of paradise. It is only 6 in. (15 cm) long and has green plumes and blue legs. Many species are polygamous, and the drab-colored female assumes all the nesting duties. The biological basis for the elaborate coloration and displays seems to be the need for an accurate means of distinction and recognition between species, since hybridization is disadvantageous. Birds of paradise are classified in the phylum ChordataChordata
, phylum of animals having a notochord, or dorsal stiffening rod, as the chief internal skeletal support at some stage of their development. Most chordates are vertebrates (animals with backbones), but the phylum also includes some small marine invertebrate animals.
..... Click the link for more information.
, subphylum Vertebrata, class Aves, order Passeriformes, family Paradisaeidae.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2013, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved. www.cc.columbia.edu/cu/cup/

bird of paradise

1. any songbird of the family Paradisaeidae of New Guinea and neighbouring regions, the males of which have brilliantly coloured ornate plumage
2. bird-of-paradise flower any of various banana-like plants of the genus Strelitzia, esp S. reginae, that are native to tropical southern Africa and South America and have purple bracts and large orange or yellow flowers resembling birds' heads: family Strelitziaceae
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
Every street is lined with tall trees and the hedges are full of brightly coloured bougainvilleas and the tall exotic bird of paradise flowers show up stunningly in the most unlikely places.
It's all stone, slate, wood and leather with moody black and white photos on the wall and exotic bird of paradise flowers on the bar.
We watched,in awe,as he grouped roses, architectural shamrock chrysanthemums and exquisite bird of paradise flowers into beautiful rosettes using little more than bear grass and a smidge of coir rope.
We watched in awe as he grouped roses, architectural shamrock chrysanthemums and exquisite bird of paradise flowers into beautiful rosettes using little more than bear grass and a smidge of coir rope.
At the moment the bird of paradise flowers from South Africa and the bright red bottle brush plants from Australia are coming into their own just as the delicate petalled hibiscus are coming to an end.
buy bird of paradise flowers; Tourists fall for local charmers' offer of a lift home; Leanne's putting is rubbish..
The island is a riot of colour, with banana trees, orange groves, orchids and bird of paradise flowers growing everywhere.
This is the time for the finishing flourishes on this dream laid on grass, which is home to the Rose of China, Bird of Paradise flowers from Africa, Oleander plants from the river valleys of the Mediterranean, tree ferns from Australasia and the Powder Puff tree of South America.
for example, exotic orchids or bird of paradise flowers are perfect for foreign holiday snaps.