We asked Abdullah (i.e. Ibn Masud) about this verse: “And do not regard those who have been killed in the cause of Allah as dead, rather are they alive with their Lord, being provided for (Qur’an Chapter 3 Verse 169).” He said: “We asked about that and the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: ‘Their souls are in the insides of green birds having lanterns suspended from the Throne, roaming freely in Paradise where they please, then taking shelter in those lanterns. So their Lord cast a glance at them (1) and said: ‘Do you wish for anything?’ They said: ‘What shall we wish for when we roam freely in Paradise where we please?’ And thus did He do to them three times. When they say that they would not be spared from being asked [again], they said: ‘O Lord, we would like for You to put back our souls into our bodies so that we might fight for Your sake once again. And when He saw that they were not in need of anything they were let be.’”
[Found in Sahih Muslim]
Prophet (pbuh) said: "When your brothers were killed in Uhud, Allah put their souls in the hearts of green birds that flew near the rivers of Paradise and ate from its fruits and were looking towards golden lamps hanging from the shade of the Throne. So, when they saw the sweetness of their food and drink and resting places, they said: 'Who will inform our brothers about us that we are alive in Paradise and are provided for so that they will not be lax in striving in Allah's cause and will not lose firmness during war?' So Allaah - the Exalted - said: 'I will inform them on your behalf.'"
[Found in Jamee as sagheer]
Jihad (Kitab Al-Jihad) Dawud :: Book 14 : Hadith 2514 Narrated Abdullah ibn Abbas: The Prophet (peace_be_upon_ him) said: When your brethren were smitten at the battle of Uhud, Allah put their spirits in the crops of green birds which go down to the rivers of Paradise, eat its fruit and nestle in lamps of gold in the shade of the Throne. Then when they experienced the sweetness of their food, drink and rest, they asked: Who will tell our brethren about us that we are alive in Paradise provided with provision, in order that they might not be disinterested in jihad and recoil in war? Allah Most High said: I shall tell them about you; so Allah sent down; “And do not consider those who have been killed in Allah’s path.” till the end of the verse.
The Book on Government (Kitab Al-Imara) Muslim :: Book 20 : Hadith 4651 It has been narrated on the authority of Masruq Who said: We asked ‘Abdullah about the Qur’anic verse:” Think not of those who are slain in Allah’s way as dead. Nay, they are alive, finding their sustenance in the presence of their Lord..” (iii. 169).
He said: We asked the meaning of the verse (from the Holy Prophet) who said: The souls, of the martyrs live in the bodies of green birds who have their nests in chandeliers hung from the throne of the Almighty. They eat the fruits of Paradise from wherever they like and then nestle in these chandeliers. Once their Lord cast a glance at them and said: Do ye want anything? They said: What more shall we desire? We eat the fruit of Paradise from wherever we like. Their Lord asked them the same question thrice. When they saw that they will continue to be asked and not left (without answering the question). they said: O Lord, we wish that Thou mayest return our souls to our bodies so that we may be slain in Thy way once again. When He (Allah) saw that they had no need, they were left (to their joy in heaven).
Al-Tirmidhi Hadith Hadith 1631 Narrated by Umm Bishr, daughter of al-Bara’ ibn Ma’rur Abdur Rahman ibn Ka’b told on his father’s authority that when death came to Ka’b, Umm Bishr, daughter of al-Bara’ ibn Ma’rur, visited him and said, “Abu Abdur Rahman, if you meet so and so, give him a greeting from me.” He replied, “Allah forgive you, Umm Bishr, I shall be too occupied to do that.” She said, “Abu Abdur Rahman, have you not heard Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) say that the souls of believers are in green birds which are suspended on and feed on the trees of Paradise?” On his replying that he had, she said that that was what she meant. Ibn Majah and Bayhaqi, in Kitab al-Ba’th wan-Nushur, transmitted it.
Al-Tirmidhi and al-Haakim narrated, in a report that was classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Targheeb (13762) from Ibn ‘Abbaas that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “I saw Ja’far ibn Abi Taalib as an angel flying in Paradise with the angels, with two wings.” Ahwaal al-Quboor (p. 92-104).
Jihad has its rewards. A honoured place in Paradise. The soul migrates into one of the green birds of Paradise which will be flying around Allah's Throne eating the delights and fruits. The green bird is the symbol of peace. The fighters of Jihad at the battle of Uhad dismayed at their plight in Paradise when turned into the green birds wanted their relatives to know their plight. Forget the virgins there aren't any, only the most prestigious position in Paradise!
The believers have their soul likened to a bird in Islam. The believers all have their souls perching inside birds until the Day of Resurrection. The birds fly around Paradise sustaining the soul.
The Messenger of Allaah (p.b.u.h.) said, "The souls of the believers are inside green birds in the trees of Paradise until Allah returns them to their bodies on the Day of Resurrection." (Sahih: At Tabarani in al Kabeer from Ka'b Ibn Malik & Umm Mubashshir)