Small, recalling a beige chiffchaff or other Phylloscopus warbler. Rather nondescript: gray brown above, paler below, with a short, dark-tipped bill and conspicuous pale eyebrow. Pot-bellied with short wings and a square-tipped tail. Can be extremely difficult to identify; compare carefully with small Acrocephalus warblers and other Iduna warblers, especially Sykes’s Warbler. Found in low bushes in steppes and meadows; also bushy areas in migration and in winter. Usually forages low down, and occasionally on the ground. Song starts out with a few dry chitters, then launches into a rapidfire burst of high-pitched chattering that almost stumbles over itself. Also gives dry “tchak” and rattle calls.