Tiny, short-tailed bird with a thin, slightly upturned bill. All plumages show yellow eyering and heavy dark streaks on the back and belly. Different subspecies vary tremendously in head pattern, ranging from black-headed to white-headed, streaked to unstreaked. Inhabits montane rainforest, where usually seen in small flocks that methodically clamber along tree trunks, probing for insects in bark. Birds give frequent “chip-chip” call as they forage.