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Doves are considered “Pigeons with good P.R.” (public relations) because they are of the same family and share a lot of the same desirable traits, but the Pigeon has a tainted, maybe even undeserved reputation. Both are highly intelligent, friendly, and have an ancient tradition of carrying messages between cities because of their ability to travel long distances and find their way “home”. 100,000 pigeons were used to deliver messages during Word War I and had an amazing delivery rate of 95%. The only thing that got in the Pigeon's way were people shooting them down, which was not often the case because of their ability to fly at high speed (highest recorded speed is 92.5 miles per hour). Doves, though, are prettier than Pigeons. They are typically all white and have been referenced by the bible as holy creatures and are revered as “love birds”.
Come support your local club
Liquidating exotic pheasants and dove collection
White cheeked turaco
Pair unrelated Celebes Quail Doves
What is a Pet Dove Like?
Pet Dove Cooing
Types of Doves
- Jambu Fruit Dove (Ptilinopus jambu)
- Pink-necked Fruit Dove (Ptilinopus porphyrea)
- Spotted Dove
- Superb Fruit Dove (Ptilinopus superbus)
- Wompoo Fruit Dove (Ptilinopus magnificus)
- Yellow-breasted Fruit Dove (Ptilinopus occipitalis)
Doves are monogamous birds. The Love Birds have been known to mate for life. It's rare for a couple to have 1 egg or 3 or more and most often lay 2 eggs exactly. They are able to raise up to 9 broods a year and can live up to 30 years in captivity, but rarely make it past 4 years in urban settings. After mating, the eggs are laid typically 8-12 days later and hatched after 18 days of incubation. Sexual maturity is said to be reached at 7 months of age. They are great breeding birds and a favorite to bird keepers of all kinds.
Doves Calling Sounds
Some species of Dove are called “Mourning Doves” for their mournful sounds that they make, but all Doves produce sounds like this. Some of the sounds are only produced by the male and its a signal to its female companion, not one of mourning.
Although the Dove prefers to live in woodlands and tropical forests, the bird can be found virtually anywhere in the world except the harshest living climates such as the desert and Antarctica. They are highly adaptable, just like Pigeons. The family they both belong to is named Columbidae and there are many, many species of Doves including the White Dove, Diamond Dove, Peaceful Dove, Socorro Dove, Mountain Witch, Cape Dove, Golden Heart Dove, and more.
What do Doves Eat?
In nature, when you observe a Dove or Pigeon eating, it's likely that you are actually seeing it store food in its esophagus for later consumption. Doves can go 16 hours without eating, in fact. For reasons unknown, Doves and Pigeons have no gallbladder, but still produce bile that's secreted straight into their stomachs. They also produce what's called “crop milk” for their young, a milk substance that is higher in protein and fat content than the milk produced by mammals. The Dove's diet mainly consists of seeds and sometimes insects. They are a member of the Pigeon family so you can imagine they have an opportunistic diet and are highly adaptive. In captivity, they will eat soft pellet made specifically for their species, and their diet can be supplemented by some vegetables a few times a week and essential vitamins. If your bird has not eaten in a few days, act immediately. Sick birds need to be tended to and diets adjusted accordingly to save their lives or they can pass away in 2-5 days.