1. (Science: ornithology) Any one of numerous species of small limicoline game birds belonging to tringa, Actodromas, Ereunetes, and various allied genera of the family Tringidae.
The most important North American species are the pestoral sandpiper (tringa maculata), called also browback, grass snipe, and jacksnipe; the red–backed, or black-breasted, sandpiper, or dunlin (T. Alpina); the purple sandpiper (T.maritima: the red-breasted sandpiper, or knot (T. Canutus); the semipalmated sandpiper (Ereunetes pusillus); the spotted sandpiper, or teeter-tail (Actitis macularia); the buff-breasted sandpiper (Tryngites subruficollis), and the Bartramian sandpiper, or upland plover. See Upland. Among the European species are the dunlin, the knot, the ruff, the sanderling, and the common sandpiper (Actitis, or tringoides, hypoleucus), called also fiddler, peeper, pleeps, weet-weet, and summer snipe. Some of the small plovers and tattlers are also called sandpipers.
2. (Science: zoology) A small lamprey eel; the pride. Curlew sandpiper. See Curlew. Stilt sandpiper. See Stilt.