Overall pale rufous colour with fine black streaks, spots and bars. Very upright stance with long yellow legs. It has a diagnostic cream-coloured eye. It has a grey and black barred tail with a white tip to the tail feathers.
Prefers open dry grassland, savanna grassland and verges of agricultural fields.
Solitary and or in pairs. It often sits on a high perch. Hunts from perches or by hovering.
Feeds mainly on invertebrates such as grasshoppers, also reptiles, birds and small mammals.
Monogamous. Uses old, especially crows and raptor nests in trees.