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in general, any bird of the suborders Eurylaimi, Tyranni, and Menurae of the order Passeriformes (perching birds, or passerines) as distinguished from an oscine, or songbird (q.v.), a member of the suborder Passeres. The term suboscine implies, perhaps rightly, that birds of this group are more primitive in anatomy and behaviour than the oscines, which are usually considered the most highly specialized of birds.