Bill short, strong, wide, the tip of the culmen hooked and toothed; nostrils and base of bill covered with well-developed bristles. Feet small, tarsi short. Tail-feathers 12; primaries 10. Plumage soft and dense; skin very thin.
This family is found in the Oriental and Ethiopian regions and in Tropical America. Only one genus, which is widely distributed in the Oriental region, is found within our limits.