This chunky bird is dingy yellow below and dark brownish above with a yellow or tawny crown. Sexes similar. Could be confused with Yellow-breasted Brushfinch, which is found at higher elevations and has a brighter rufous crown. Pairs or small groups are found foraging in the lower levels of montane forest, edges and tangles, often clambering around a couple meters from the ground. Found from around 600–2,500 m.