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Double-banded Sandgrouse

Double-banded Sandgrouse
Photo Information
Copyright: Anna Eksteen (Miss_Piggy) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 2285 W: 5 N: 5300] (18714)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2009-10-19
Categories: Birds
Camera: Sony Cybershot DSC H9, Carl Zeiss Vario-Tessar 15x Optical zoom, Digital ISO 200
Exposure: f/4.5, 1/125 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Travelogue: Kruger NP 2009
Theme(s): CeltickRanger's favorite Bird photos -2-, Birds of South Africa 3 [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2010-07-23 9:57
Viewed: 5154
Points: 94
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Double-banded Sandgrouse / Pterocles bicinctus

The Double-banded Sandgrouse is the 25th in the series of the birds of the Kruger National Park, which I am currently sharing. Enjoy!

Until the day I have taken this photo, I have never seen this bird before, and if I did I cannot remember the moment. Loot was just as excited as I was when we saw this beauty on our way to Satara camp. The prominent colours and detail in its plumage caught my eye within seconds. The patterns are really striking and at the time reminded me of mosaic tiles. We did not really have much opportunity to capture it as moments after we stopped it flew across the road when another vehicle came speeding towards it. It landed about 200m away from us in a field on the other side of the road. Luckily for us we saw it flying back across the road again and we approached it very cautiously and then made full use of the opportunity to capture it. Loot said in all the time that he have been visiting the Kruger (±20 years) this was only the 3rd time that he have encountered one of these birds. So we were extremely fortunate to see and to be able to photograph one of them. This is only the forth photo of one of these birds appearing on Trek Nature. The whole day was rather dark and cool as it was very heavily overcast.

Near endemic species are confined to a specific geographical region rather than a single country. Certain birds in The Kruger National Park are near endemic to Mozambique, and Zimbabwe for example. One such example is the Double-banded Sandgrouse and this species depends upon a certain type of habitat for survival. Destroy that habitat and the bird becomes endangered.

The height is between 25-28cm and its weight is about 230g. The plumage of the male and female differ. This species most resembles Namaqua Sandgrouse but the male is easily identified by the black and white markings on the forehead, and the barring on the lower breast and belly. It has a thin, black and white breast band. It has a short tailpiece and the legs and bill is yellow.

It mainly eats seeds, doing most of its foraging in the early morning, late afternoon and at night (provided there is enough moonlight). The following food items have been recorded in its diet: Seeds, Acacia, Requenia sphaerosperma (Red pea), Tephrosia Cyperus, Bidens bidentata (Blackjack) and Datura innoxia (Hairy thorn-apple).

Breeding and nesting habits
Monogamous, solitary nester, with the male performing a pre-copulatory display in which he slowly walks around near the female with his tail pointing upwards and his bill pointed toward the ground. The nest is a shallow scrape in the soil, gravel or sand, typically lined with a few pieces of dry plant material and placed between grass tufts, beneath a bush or out in the open.

Egg-laying season is from February-September, peaking from May-August in Namibia and Botswana and from July-September in Zimbabwe and northern South Africa. It lays 2-3 eggs, which are incubated by both sexes for about 23-24 days (recorded in captivity). The development and care of the chicks is little known, but it is thought that chicks can fly strongly by the time they are roughly a month old, developing the adult plumage 2-5 months later.

Habitat and flocking behaviour
The preferred habitats are: woodlands and savannah. They are also at home in wetland and bushveld areas. Flocks gather at drinking times at dusk.

Names of this avian species in other languages
Afrikaans ... Dubbelbandsandpatrys
German ... Nachtflughuhn
Portuguese ... Corticol-de-duas-golas
French ... Ganga bibande
Dutch ... Dubbelbandzandhoen


I hope you enjoy looking at this photo as much as I took pleasure in taking it.

rousettus, boreocypriensis, marius-secan, CatherineD, jaycee, jlinaresp, jlynx, anel, maurydv, sandpiper2, Alex99, CeltickRanger, siggi, Noisette, pnieuwoudt, haraprasan, Mamagolo2, Heaven, Argus, sranjan, ferranjlloret, uleko, marhowie, pierrefonds, dolors, Luis52, omereser, jusninasirun has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2010-07-23 10:06]

Hello Anna,
A fantastic photo of this Dubbelbandzandhoen, taken from a perfect POV. Excellent in every way, great quality! The yellow eye-ring is amazing.
Have a nice weekend,

Ciao Anna. Top sharp and details with bright colours. Good capture for this interesting specie.


Hi Anna,
What a superb capture of this bright looking grouse.
'Grouse' is also a saying in New Zealand for 'groovy' or 'cool'.
This is a really grouse photo.
What beautiful colours and patterns.

hello Anna
sorry for my silence. I came back after a break of one month.
This is very pretty Sandgrouse. I have seen two species of this genus, by the time. this is different and beautiful as like others. It looks very nice with yellow ringed eyes. you greatly captured her on the ground. nice details, POV and colors. nicely composed and presented with good informative notes. thanks for visiting. best regards to you and dear Loot.

Hi Anna,

Stunning and flawless capture of this lovely and chunky -like my desert agama:)- beauty from excellent POV with great details, great DOF and delightful composition. Its pose just adorable!
Thanks for sharing this impressive shot MF!
Have a nice WE!


Hello Anna,
Lovely details and very good colours.
Outstanding capture and exceptional focus and sharpness.
Wonderful composition.

hello Anna this is a very beautiful bird
great sharpness and great colours
greeting lou

Hello Anna,
Great capture of this lovely bird. Excellent colours and details of his head and feathers. You came very close... Congratulations for this rare capture! Have a nice weekend,

  • Great 
  • jaycee Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
  • [2010-07-23 16:10]

Hi Anna,

It's so exciting to spot a new bird - doesn't happen often enough to me. This Sandgrouse is fantastic. I love his yellow eye ring and the distinctive feathers. The top of his head reminds me of a White Crowned Sparrow with the stripes going the wrong way. An amazing shot showing him off with excellent colors and details.


Hello Anna,
Great photo with excellent light and details very nice! there is good texture in the plumage and a good contact to the eye of the bird! ... every time you drive better your Sony bridge! Congratulations!
TFS, Regards, Jesús

Hi Anna,
What a wonderful picture of that Sandgrouse! The natural colours, sharpness and also the details are fabulous. I like that picture very much!

Many thanks for sharing your picture here.
Have a nice start into your weekend.

Sascha ;O)

  • Great 
  • nagraj Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1618 W: 106 N: 3208] (15166)
  • [2010-07-24 0:54]

Very beautiful bird with great colors and texture, well captured, fine image. tfs.

Wow, Anna, how do you manage to attract all ther wonderful birds! You are extremely fortunate! Once again, true colours and very sharp, what more can one ask for. Well done!

  • Great 
  • jlynx Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Note Writer [C: 87 W: 7 N: 46] (455)
  • [2010-07-24 1:58]

Hello Anna.
Very nice portrait of a bird, perfectly positioned in the frame. Nicely presented the gold rim around the eye Double-banded Sandgrouse. Its plumage provides excellent camouflage against predators.
Very good picture, well captured moment. The bird seemed deliberately wanted to show all their qualities.
My congratulations.

  • Great 
  • anel Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 3053 W: 3 N: 8715] (40574)
  • [2010-07-24 2:01]

Hello Anna,
A very beautiful bird with its special spotted ans earth-colored plumage and the yellow-ringed eye. I can imagine that you have been most happy to see this rare bird. And you caught it in a perfect pose on the soil, where it seems to remain most of time. It seems to live dangerously having its nest on the ground!
Thanks for sharing this fine and interesting picture.
Kind regards

Hi, Anna,
Excellent foreground of this beautiful Sandgrouse. Thanks for the added information.
Best regards,

Hallo Anna,
a very beautiful portrtait of the Double-banded Sandgrouse, excellent low POV, very good sharpness and marvellous natural colours, nice composition
Best regards

Ciao Anna, lovely bird with beautiful colors, fine details and splendid sharpness, very well done my friend, have a good week end, ciao Silvio

Hi Anna

A great shot of this unusual species. I think you were indeed lucky to see this one. Good composition and sharpness. Its a great series Anna, I'm enjoying it a lot.


  • Great 
  • Alex99 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4072 W: 133 N: 7096] (23735)
  • [2010-07-24 9:57]

Hi Anna.
Once more charming photo model on your picture. You have reflected its light nervousness perfectly. But it is truth all other features of the bird (attractive coloration, feathers, shapes) are reproduced brilliantly too in spite of absence of strong direct sunlight. Natural surroundings are very cute and supplement the main character very well. As usual quality of the shot is great. My best wishes and TS.

Greet Ann.
Very pretty picture (how I suppose from cocks' family bird) very good composition. with sharpness bad a bit, but generally good impression does generally.
I greet robert.

  • Great 
  • foozi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 2791 W: 0 N: 6696] (25839)
  • [2010-07-25 7:12]

Hello Anna,
very well captured shot of this grouse. I like its big eye and the spotted whites on the back.
You really have given a good sharpness and clarity to the bird.
The dried grass at the background render a good colur to form a pleasant background.
Very well composed of a nice bird.


hello Anna

this is a very beautiful and excellent photo of this rare bird on TN,
very fine low POV with fine focus excellent sharpness and
details of its wonderful patterned plumage, beautiful eye-contact,



Hello Anna,
congratulations for the photo, beautiful, excellent sharpness and contrast.
Excellent POV and beautiful colors.
Thanks for sharing
Hello Vanni

  • Great 
  • siggi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3097 W: 109 N: 12399] (52850)
  • [2010-07-25 12:45]

Hallo Anna,
very nice capture of lovely Double-banded Sandgrouse . It gave a nice pose to you. sharp focus, lovely eye's contact, POV and
composition very nice. TFS,Best regards Siggi

Hello Anna
yes , you are right, the plumage of this Double-banded Sandgrouse is superb, and thanks the grea sharpness, we can see all the fine details, the bird have a nice pose and i like also the natural environment
Have a good nigh

Hi Anna,
Once again a very interesting sharp photo! Well captured – your perseverance paid off to wait for it to come back once it flew off. He is looking at you as if he is posing specially for this photo. I have been visiting Kruger for many years and have not seen them.
Enjoy your week.

Hi Anna,
A nice capture of this beautiful bird. Very good sharp details and a nice composition. Thanks a lot for sharing.

Hola Anna

Realmente es un ave muy bonita y que tampoco yo habçia visto antes. Una imagen bien tomada, con perfecta nitidez y contraste.

Un saludo de Antonio

How cute and beautiful species
I was restless.
very cute.

Hi Anna,
All I can say is WOW!! This is such a stunning photo. Beautiful colors and clear detail.
Very well done my friend and thanks for sharing.

Dear Anna!

I'm glad to be back on TN, finally earlier than I had told you. Well, I missed you all so much...

It's a pleasure to re-discover your gallery, to "walk" through and to get impregneted by all these beautiful animals. I never have seen a picture of this Sandgrouse and I'm happy to meet her. It seems that it was a first for and Loot, too. The bird ia a beauty, and your picture reflects this very well. As usually, your narrative notes and the description of the animal are exciting to read. This description allows the reader to understand why you have captured it on the pavement!

Kind regards


Hola Anna,
mis comentarios a tus fotografías son siempre parecidos por lo que también siempre te digo:
rareza de las especies para los que somos de estas latitudes y como no, una buena captura de ellas.
Supongo que ahora, en pleno invierno para vosotros :-) debéis de tener pocos insectos aunque no se como va el clima exactamente por ahí. Aquí en pleno verano y con muchísima calor.
Un abrazo: Josep Ignasi.

  • Great 
  • Argus Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
  • [2010-07-30 7:06]

Hello Anna,
Nice that this Double-banded Sandgrouse flew back for you to make this fine capture of it from your car. The lateral POV is shown with excellent sharpness and natural colours and the dry grass on the roadside makes a fine BG in this pleasing composition.
Thanks and have a good weekend,

Nice to hear that you and Loot will soon be grand-parents!

Dearest friend,
Soon a year - since you took this great image - I guess you cannot wait to go back there on your holiday!

Your detailed notes are very interesting: you put a lot of hard work into your preparations! All my books are already parcelled - and I am really glad I do not have to google the Double-banded Sand grouse - but can learn it ALL from YOUR information provided! Thanks!

I can understand Loot's excitement - in all the years I have lived here in the bush, I have not seen Double-banded Sand grouse.

The absolutely still posture is amazing, like a soldier in a parade standing at attention...

Therefore, the perfect focus reveals ALL details of this very attractive bird.

The subtle colours explains it's uniform, a perfect camouflage when it ''disappears'' amongst the dry yellow grass.

The ""yellow eye shadow"" is therefore surprising, and I wonder if this has to do with the feeding habits e.g. Acacia?!?

You must be very proud of this image - which you hid from us til now :-))

Congratulation on the overall presentation including the detailed notes.

Have a nice evening

Hello Anna,
The grouse has given you outstanding pose. I appreciate the details & your notes on KNP.
Regards Subhash

  • Great 
  • uleko Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3396 W: 172 N: 3310] (10940)
  • [2010-08-01 2:39]

Hello Anna,
I bet this is a shy bird hard to capture but you did very well here! I love its static pose that clearly shows details of the beautiful markings and colours against the soft natural background.
TFS and best wishes, Ulla

I like the distinctive yellow eye ring offset with those B&W bands, cool!
Great exposure, color, and details you have shown us in this beautiful bird..
I enjoyed the story about how you & Loot went after it, your patience & persistence has triumphed. That's teamwork for ya ;-)

  • Great 
  • OzBY Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 183 W: 2 N: 351] (1355)
  • [2010-08-02 6:06]

Hi Anna
Great picture with good sharpness of this bird
Great color


Hi Anna,

The bird is well placed in the framed. The point of view is showing with precision the details and colors of the Double-banded Sandgrouse. The late afternoon light is enhancing the colors. have a nice day.


Hello Anna, Yeah, I would be excited to get this beauty in front of my camera too. I could imagine you and loot chasing this one down(I'm imagining it in a comical sense). The lighting couldn't be better for the incredible colors and patterns that this grouse displays in your wonderful capture. :)

  • Great 
  • dolors (33)
  • [2010-08-02 11:31]

Hello Anna,
A very pretty bird. The sharpness and colors are extraordinary.

  • Luis52 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1175 W: 8 N: 4240] (15809)
  • [2010-08-02 15:05]

Hola Anna.
I guess You also love birds as much as I do. They are beautiful and diferent from one to another. this one rally has a beuatiful yellow ring on eyes and just take a close look on his plumage... WOW.
Beautiful photo Anna.

  • Great 
  • tuslaw Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2754 W: 282 N: 4931] (19883)
  • [2010-08-02 20:15]

Hello Anna,
What a beautifully colored bird. The plumage has such an attractive camouflauged pattern to it. Love the bright yellow eye ring and those short stout legs. I would imagine that this particular bird is a really fast flyer, just by looking at it's body features. Great work!!

Hello Anna,
Very beautiful bird of South Africa. Pterocles alchata is similiar species in Turkey.

  • Great 
  • Nilson Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 488 W: 0 N: 566] (4423)
  • [2010-08-03 17:04]

Hello Anna
This is a lovely bird, very interesting and different. Good colors and sharp details, the composition is amazing
Well done

  • Great 
  • fthsm Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 172 W: 56 N: 512] (3689)
  • [2010-10-24 3:05]

I love all the members of Sandgrouse family but I still couldn't see any of them yet :) This is one of the photos that I'd wish to own. Very nice one that makes me jealous.
Best Regards,

Hi Anna.
This is such a great shot in close framing and the capture is well defined too. The exposure of the plumage is brilliant and the spots on the wings are in very good details.
You are lucky to be surrounded by beautiful natural surrounding and appreciated your effort in sharing them in TN.
Best regards,

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