A small, ground-dwelling squirrel with conspicuous lengthwise stripes on the back, sides and cheeks. The tail is well haired but not bushy, is somewhat flattened and is shorter than the body. Background color of the upperparts is a grizzled reddish brown, grading into rusty on the rump and flanks. There are 5 dark brown to blackish lengthwise stripes from shoulders to rump with a buff to whitish band between the two stripes on each side. Belly and sides are buff to white. Tail is blackish above and rusty below with a narrow white or yellowish fringe. The make a variety of calls, especially “Chips” and a soft “cuck-cuck.” They make a trilling “chipp-r-r-r-r” when surprised.