A small dainty bee-eater that is intensely green overall with a greenish-blue throat, a thin black throat band, and long central tail feathers. In flight, note the dark edge along the lower border of the wings. Juveniles are duller than adults and lack the long tail feathers. In some parts of its range, birds may have a rusty crown or a bright blue throat. Flies gracefully as it catches insects and other prey. Common in open woodlands, fields, farmlands, and around sparse human habitation. Some populations show seasonal movements. Calls are a series of gentle liquid trills.