Mourning Dove: Medium-sized dove with gray-brown upperparts and pink-brown underparts. Eyes are dark with a small, black spot beneath. Bill is dark. Wings are gray-brown with black spots and dark primaries. Tail is long and pointed with black-edged white tips on outer feathers. Swift direct flight.
Range and Habitat
Mourning Dove: Breeds from southeastern Alaska, Saskatchewan, Ontario, Quebec, and New Brunswick southward to Mexico and Panama. Spends winters north to the northern U.S. Favorite habitats include open fields, parks, and lawns with many trees and shrubs.
The Mourning Dove has a large range, estimated globally at 11,000,000 square kilometers. Native to the Americas and nearby island nations, this bird prefers wetland, forest, and shrubland ecosystems though it can reside on arable land or in rural and urban areas. The global population of this bird is estimated at 130,000,000 individuals and does not show signs of decline that would necessitate inclusion on the IUCN Red List. For this reason, the current evaluation status of the Mourning Dove is Least Concern.
Both males and females secrete a substance from their crop that is high in protein and fat. Called crop milk or pigeon milk, it resembles and smells like cottage cheese and is fed to young birds.
It is a game bird; and in many states, habitat is created with the specific purpose to hunt birds.
The oldest documented wild Mourning Dove was 19.3 years old. The average lifespan of wild birds is 1.5 years.
A group of doves has many collective nouns, including a "bevy", "cote", "dole", "dule", and "flight" of doves.