secretary birdsecretary bird
a large, black and grayish-blue African bird of prey (Sagittarius serpentarius), the only species in its family (Sagittariidae), with a long neck, long legs, and tufts of penlike feathers sticking out from the back of its head: it feeds on insects, snakes, etc.
Origin of secretary birdfrom the penlike feathers of its crest
A large African bird of prey (Sagittarius serpentarius) with long legs, gray and black plumage, and a crest of quills at the back of the head.
Origin of secretary birdProbably so called after its crest of quills, which reminded 18th-century observers of legal secretaries who stuck their quills into their wigs when not writing with them.
(plural secretary birds)
Named because its crest of long feathers resembles quill pens stuck behind the ears of an office clerk.