(of an alien) bird-like
The flightless yet still half avian race that now possessed the planet settled down to construct a society based on industry and science. After many vicissitudes of fortune and of aim, they produced a new human species, the Eighth Men. These long-headed and substantial folk were designed to be strictly pedestrian, physically and mentally.
Imagine! Another civilization in embryo—avian this time. An avian culture would hardly build cities. But this is a culture where the glider comes before the wheel.
Yeh, he thought, they’re for sure prettier than humans, but you have to see them to realize it. About five feet tall, the short avian body was balanced on two stout yellow legs. The arms, thinner and weaker than humans, ended in hands whose three fingers, four-jointed and mutually opposed, were surprisingly dextrous. The head, atop a long thick neck, was large and round, with a hooked beak. A throat pouch produced a whole orchestra of sounds, even labials. But all you could really convey in words was the intense blueness of the feathers, the white plumage of tail and crest.
Torches guttering in sconces threw an uneasy light—dim and red to Adzel, bright to a native—on sleazy garments, avian faces, unwinking eyes.
The monarch inclined his avian head.
If you wish to enter your animals in the Non-Flying Avian classes, they must not fly at all.
Their sharp-edged faces, scale-dusted but more avian than reptile, stared enraptured at one of their number who hung in the air.
When she yelled into the depths of the avian lair the second time, there was an immediate response.
Risky Lady was a standard aerospace plane which still had…the ever-present biolink the avian aliens had given him.
We've seen avian nests but they're always near water, preferably large lakes or rivers.
Is nacelles extended like the wings of some monstrous avian predator.
Long, graceful, translucent creatures, gossamer-thin, like ribbons of shimmering air, they excited some brief interest. Though avian, they were very unlike other avian species so far discovered. They spent their whole lives in the air, subsisting on airborne algae and plankton native to the high mists of the Rivendale mountain chains.
But he knew where to go. To the eastern edge of campus, near the Warren, where the monsters lived. Avian, saurian, gasbags, methane breathers—all the bizarre variations the universe had offered up, once humans escaped the confines of Old Earth. All the aliens that could survive on a planet’s surface, in human-comfortable temperatures, at any rate.
Olaf Stapledon, "Last and First Men"
Last modified 2021-03-25 20:15:11
In the compilation of some entries, HDSF has drawn extensively on corresponding entries in OED.