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Any of several birds of paradise of the genus Ptiloris of Australia and New Guinea, characteristically having black and green plumage.
[After the very dark green uniforms with black facings and the black shako with a green plume worn by the British Rifle Brigade.]
(Animals) any of various birds of paradise of the genera Ptiloris and Craspedophora, such as C. magnifica (magnificent riflebird)
[from its call, compared to a whistling bullet]