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Sandgrouse: Pterocliformes

Behavior And Reproduction

Sandgrouse feed, rest, and nest on the ground. They fly to water every day, a trip that, depending on the population, can be as far as 75 miles (120 kilometers) round-trip. Sandgrouse are generally found in large flocks that can include several hundreds or even thousands of individuals. Because sandgrouse occupy desert habitats, they generally forage, or search for food, during the cooler hours of the day.

During the breeding season, sandgrouse are monogamous (muh-NAH-guh-mus), a single male mates with a single female. Nests are made by scraping the ground, often in the shade of a small plant. Nests may be lined with stones or with bits of vegetation. The female lays three eggs at a time. Sandgrouse eggs are long and spotted. The female incubates, sits on, the eggs during the day, while the male incubates during the night hours. Chicks hatch after twenty-one to thirty-one days. Parents do not feed the chicks. However, the male does provide water to the young by soaking his belly feathers with water and flying back to the nest. Chicks are able to fly after four or five weeks.

Additional topics

Animal Life ResourceBirdsSandgrouse: Pterocliformes - Physical Characteristics, Behavior And Reproduction, Sandgrouse And People, Namaqua Sandgrouse (pterocles Namaqua): Species Accounts - GEOGRAPHIC RANGE, HABITAT, DIET, CONSERVATION STATUS