Small, brown bird of rainforest floor. Plumage overall dark chestnut brown with a paler throat and blackish tail; bill is thin and slightly decurved. A seldom-seen resident of tall humid forest, where it forages in leaf litter around old fallen logs, tree buttresses, and upturned root masses. Always on or near the ground, flicking leaves in search of insect prey. Usually encountered alone and does not follow mixed-species flocks. Most readily detected when flushed or disturbed, and may assess an observer from a low perch, giving a sharp squeaking call note and moving about nervously. Song, given infrequently, is a series of clear, descending, whistled notes with an impatient quality, sometimes ending in a hard rattle. Very similar to Tawny-throated Leaftosser; Short-billed has shorter bill and is more uniformly brown on breast and belly, but a good view may be required to verify these marks.