The Common Waxbill is a small passerine bird belonging to the estrildid finch family. It is native to sub-Saharan Africa but has been introduced to many other regions of the world. It is popular and easy to keep in captivity.
It is a small bird, 15 centimeters long and a weight of 10 grams. It has a slender body with short rounded wings and a long graduated tail. The bright red bill of the adult is the color of sealing wax giving the bird its name. The plumage is mostly grey-brown, finely barred with dark brown. There is a red stripe through the eye and the cheeks and throat are whitish. There is often a pinkish flush to the underparts and a reddish stripe along the center of the belly depending on the subspecies. The rump is brown and the tail and vent are dark. Females are similar to the males but are paler with less red on the belly. Juveniles are duller with little or no red on the belly, fainter dark barring and a black bill.