A medium-large, highly variable eagle that can range in overall color from whitish or creamy dull rufous to grayish-brown, and rarely dark brown. It has a moderately long gape line that stops at the center of the eye and slit-shaped nostrils. Legs are short and heavily feathered, with baggy “trousers.” Juveniles are generally paler than adults, while older immatures can have a dark hood and pale body. Mostly a bird of plains and open scrub; rarely seen over water, and avoids forests. Overall not as heavy looking as the Steppe Eagle, and never has a rich brown color tone.