The red bill, violet cheeks, brilliant blue rump and black tail are diagnostic.
Male has chestnut head and body plumage and a black chin. Female has biscuit-coloured head and body with a blue rump; the violet on the cheeks is less extensive than on male. Juvenile resembles female but lacks the violet on the face.
Woodland and savanna, especially thornveld.
A soft, whistled 'tiu-woowee'.