The male White-streaked Antvireo is a typically nondescript antbird: small and dark gray, with narrow white tips to the wing coverts. Superficially, the male is similar to the male Plumbeous Antvireo (Dysithamnus plumbeus) of eastern Brazil, and so for many years these were considered to be conspecific. The name "White-streaked" stems from the plumage of the female: the upperparts are bright reddish brown, and the underparts are pale gray with broad white streaks. The White-streaked Antvireo occurs in humid montane forest in two disjunct areas, in the coastal mountains of Venezuela, and in the Andes from central Colombia south to northern Peru. There are subtle vocal differences between the Venezuelan and Andean subspecies, and so each is treated as a separate species by some authors. White-streaked Antvireos forage for invertebrates in the understory, often as members of mixed-species flocks.