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Adults have a rusty cap and grey underparts with a small dark spot on the breast. They have a rusty back with lighter stripes, brown wings with white bars and a slim tail. Their face is grey with a rusty line through the eye. Their flanks are splashed with light brown. They are similar in appearance to the Chipping Sparrow.
These birds forage on the ground or in low bushes, often in flocks when not nesting. They mainly eat seeds and insects, some berries.