Size: L: 20 cm. Wt: 50 g. Males and females are similar. This species is slightly seasonally dimorphic, but breeding and winter plumages are difficult to distinguish.

Adult: upperparts and upper breast dark grey-brown, heavily spotted with buffy white; lores and eye ring white; sides of breast white streaked with blackish-brown; belly and undertail coverts white; bill long, straight, dark olive; legs olive

Juvenile: similar to adult, but somewhat darker overall; head and upper breast appear smudgy, rather than distinctly spotted

Nestling: precocial and downy; upperparts buffy brown, with small dark spot behind ear, dark patch on hind-crown, and mottled brown forehead and nape; back with three dark bands; underparts and head greyish, with dark mark on thigh and dark stripe on flank; dark patches on wings