1Australian, New Zealand Any of several birds having a red bill; specifically (a) an oystercatcher (genus Haematopus); (b) the purple swamphen, Porphyrio porphyrio.
2South African rare The common waxbill, Estrilda astrild. Compare "red-beak", rooibekkie .
Mid 18th century; earliest use found in George Robertson (?1750–1832), writer on agriculture and topographer. From red + bill.