The black-bellied sandgrouse is a medium large bird breeds on dry open plains and similar habitats, but avoids areas completely lacking in vegetation. Its nest is a ground scrape into which three greenish eggs with cryptic markings are laid. Both sexes incubate, but only the male brings water.
The black-bellied sandgrouse is 15 in long and weighs 600 gms. The male has a grey head, neck, and breast. The underparts are black and the upperparts are golden-brown with darker markings. There is a thin black border around the lower breast, and a chestnut throat patch. The female has browner, more finely marked upperparts, including the head and the breast. The underparts and breast band are identical to the male.