The Vinous-throated Parrotbill is a tiny (12cm) bird with a long tail and a very small parrot-like bill, as its name indicates. Its crown and wings are rufous brown, and its back and tail are grayish brown. Its throat is whitish with very fine rufous streaks, and its underparts are tinted rufous-buff. Its iris is brown, its bill grayish and its legs and feet pinkish-gray. The Vinous-throated Parrotbill lives in active flocks and prefers scrub, thickets and forest edges. Its calls consist of very soft chirping, which is almost continuous in feeding flocks.
The Vinous-throated Parrotbill eats insects and small fruits and seeds. The Taiwan subspecies bulomachus is a richer, brighter rufous on the crown compared to birds of the mainland. It is a common resident year-round in Taiwan.