This species has a short tail and pointed wings like Common Starling, but always shows a greyish white rump in flight.
Breeding male is distinctive with its pale grey body, black-and-yellow head and black wattles; all adult males have black wings and tail. Female is grey with a whitish rump. Juvenile resembles female but is browner.
Grassland and open, broad-leaved woodland. Often in large flocks.
Various hisses and cackles, and a 'ssreeeeo' note.