A tiny, inconspicuous flycatcher that is best told by combination of small size, relatively large bill, and dense scrub habitat. If seen well, note pale buffy spectacles and yellowish wing bars. Almost always heard before seen. Occurs in dense thickets and scrub, particularly in areas with sandy soils; may be found more generally in forest edge and disturbed habitats within its limited range, where it is uncommon but probably overlooked. Voice is a stuttering purr with a distinctive hollow quality, similar to other Poecilotriccus. Told from Slate-headed Tody-Flycatcher by much duller plumage.