A dark, thickset brown finch. Males throughout most of the species’ range have black faces and throats, and pink-suffused wings and flanks; the Yakutian subspecies is deeper brown on the wings and has no trace of pink. Females have no pink and are paler on the face and throat than males. Breeds above the treeline in barren rocky areas, but descends into lowlands and foothills during the winter. Often forages in open areas such as beaches and fields.