The Bearded Barbets get their name from the bristles which fringe their heavy bills.This is a conspicuous, large barbet at 26 centimetres (10 in). It is fairly plump, with a short neck, large head and a shortish tail. The adult has a black crown, back, tail and breast band. The throat and belly are red and there is a yellow eye patch. The rump is white. The massive bill is very thick and yellow, and the well developed clump of bristles at its base give the species its name.