Small tan flycatcher of river beaches; terrestrial, or perches on low shrubs. Tan above, lighter whitish below, with a black tail with white outer tail feathers. Overlaps with the similar and often more common Drab Water Tyrant. Compared to that species, Little Ground-Tyrant has lighter underparts, no facial pattern (unlike the black eye line and pale eyebrow of Drab Water Tyrant) and white outer tail feathers contrasting with black inner tail feathers (as opposed to uniformly brown). They often flush and move in low flight along river banks, exposing their diagnostic tail patterns. Prefers wide, open beaches and mudflats along rivers to steep river banks. Known to wander when not breeding, when it can be found in a variety of open habitats.