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Species Guide
A photo of a Painted Sandgrouse (Pterocles indicus), male
Painted Sandgrouse, Male

Painted Sandgrouse

Pterocles indicus

The painted sandgrouse, Pterocles indicus, presents itself as a medium-large bird, a member of the sandgrouse family Pteroclidae. This species exhibits sexual dimorphism, with males and females donning distinct plumage.

Identification Tips

Males can be identified by their orange bills, a striking black bar across their white foreheads, and fine black lines on the nape. A white patch of bare skin encircles the eye, and a bold black and white band wraps around the chest. The underparts are a uniform pinkish-brown, while the back, wings, and tail boast brown feathers with pronounced black and white bars. Females, on the other hand, are more subdued in coloration, with a greyish-brown plumage mottled with darker brown and white bars and speckles.


The painted sandgrouse is adapted to arid environments, making its home in rough grasslands, rocky expanses, and scrub areas.


This species is indigenous to the Indian subcontinent, with its range extending across India and Pakistan.


A gregarious bird, the painted sandgrouse often gathers in flocks. These groups are known to congregate at waterholes, a vital resource in their dry habitats.

Conservation status

The IUCN Red List categorizes the painted sandgrouse as Least Concern, indicating a stable population without immediate threats to its survival.

Diet and Feeding

The diet of the painted sandgrouse primarily consists of seeds, which it forages from the ground in its arid habitat.

In the voice of David Attenborough: "In the vast dry landscapes of India and Pakistan, the painted sandgrouse thrives, its plumage a testament to its resilience in such sparse terrain. The male, with his vibrant bill and striking chest band, stands as a beacon of life in the scrub, while the female's muted tones speak to her mastery of camouflage. Here, at the waterhole, they gather – a congregation of feathers and survival, each sip a triumph over the unyielding heat of their world."

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Painted Sandgrouse on Birda

A map showing the sighting location
Hemant Kirola
24 Sep 2023 - 4:33pm

More Sandgrouse

A photo of a Pin-tailed Sandgrouse (Pterocles alchata) , male

Pin-tailed Sandgrouse

Pterocles alchata
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