pyrrhuloxia

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noun pyr·rhu·lox·ia \¦pir-(y)ə-¦läk-sē-ə\

Definition of pyrrhuloxia

plural

-s

  1. :  a medium-sized songbird (Cardinalis sinuatus) of the southwestern U.S. and Mexico that has a short, thick bill, a prominent crest, and gray and red plumage The pyrrhuloxia is shaped like a cardinal but the male is gray with red accents on face, breast, crest, wings and tail. His bill is heavier and pale. The female is all gray. — Phyllis Yochem, Corpus Christi (Texas) Caller-Times, 12 Feb. 2005 … many of the park's long-term campers maintain seed and citrus feeders for hummingbirds, thrashers, northern cardinals and the less-common pyrrhuloxias, the beautiful wine and gray desert cardinals. — Jim Burns, Arizona Republic (Phoenix), 18 Dec. 2008 —called also desert cardinal

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Origin and Etymology of pyrrhuloxia

New Latin, from Pyrrhula, genus of finches (from Greek pyrrhoulas, a red-colored bird, perhaps the bullfinch, from pyrrhos red) + Loxia


First Known Use: 1896


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