Chunky owlet with a gray head and spotted, rufous-washed underparts. There are three white spots on top of the tail which can be conspicuous in flight. Found in humid forest. Often active and vocal during the day, when it is often mobbed by angry flocks of songbirds. The main call is a very slow series of hoots. Similar in structure to Sjöstedt's Owlet, but smaller, without bars below.