one of the feathers that form the surface plumage of a bird, including those of the wings and tail but excluding such specialized types as downs and filoplumes.
Origin of contour feather
First recorded in 1865–70
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
British Dictionary definitions for contour feather
any of the feathers that cover the body of an adult bird, apart from the wings and tail, and determine its shape
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012