nounpl. -·pip·ers or -·pip·er
any of a number of small shorebirds (family Scolopacidae) similar to the snipes but distinguished by a shorter, soft-tipped bill, including the common sandpiper (Tringa hypoleucos) of Europe and the spotted sandpiper (Actitis macularia) and least sandpiper (Calidris minutilla) of North America
Any of various small shorebirds of the family Scolopacidae, usually having a long straight sensitive bill used to pick up insects, worms, and soft mollusks in mud and sand.
- Any of various small wading birds of the family Scolopacidae.
- The Common Sandpiper is found over the greater part of the Old World.
- A few varieties of shore birds breed here, as the Western willet, the Bartramian sandpiper, and the longbilled curlew.
- Of the peculiar genera only a few examples may be mentioned: Eurynorhynchus, the spoon-billed sandpiper of Siberia; Syrrhaptes, the sandgrouse of central Asia; Muscicapa of Europe.
- To the latter belong the Greenshank and Redshank, as well as the Common Sandpiper, the " Summer-Snipe " above-mentioned, a bird hardly exceeding a skylark in size, and of very general distribution throughout the British Islands, but chiefly frequenting clear streams, especially those with a gravelly or rocky bottom, and mast generally breeding on the beds of sand or shingle on their banks.
- Macularius, the " Peetweet," or Spotted Sandpiper, so called from its usual cry, or from the almost circular marks which spot its lower plumage.