Small, subtly beautiful, gray-brown duck with a black eye-mask, long neck and wings, and dark bill. Vaguely resembles a female pintail. Both sexes are similar but males sport a more prominent shaggy crest. In flight looks pallid, with whitish underwings, pale secondaries, and dark wingtips. Mostly silent. Typically found in shallow, freshwater or brackish wetlands with abundant emergent vegetation.