The Eurasian collared-dove has a black crescent “collar” on the upper back (not a complete "ring"). The song is a three-parted “coo-coo-cook” or “coo-COO-coo,” often repeated incessantly; the call is a raspy, nasal, descending “heeeewww.”
Doves symbolize peace, and they are also a popular quarry of hunters. Our mourning doves are probably the closest living relatives of the extinct passenger pigeon. Learn more about these cooing seed-eaters!
Doves and pigeons, unlike most other birds, can drink water with their heads down. Other birds must scoop up water with their bills, then throw their heads back for gravity to make the water go down their throats.
Mourning doves court in April. Usually 2 eggs are laid in a flimsy nest and are incubated for 14 days. Squabs are fully fledged at about 2 weeks. Once a pair complete their first nest, they start on the next. They can have as many as 7 nesting attempts between late March and early September.
The male mourning dove collects sticks for the nest, bringing them to the female, which constructs the nest. Upon hatching, young squabs are fed “pigeon milk,” a nutritious secretion from the adult crop gland. After about a week, the young are weaned to seeds.
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