The Kennedy Wild Bird Food guide to the Collared Dove
Eurasian collared doves are similar to Rock Pigeons in that they have plump bodies, small heads and long tails, however, they are longer-tailed than the Pigeon and are larger than Mourning Doves. They are well known for their collar-like markings, hence the name, and are often a chalky brown-grey colour.
Collared Doves are often seen on their own or in pairs, but flocks may form when food is available. In this guide, we’ll take a look at the Collared Dove and provide you with some useful information such as where doves sleep and where they migrate.
What does a Collared Dove look like?
The Eurasian Collared Dove can be described as a chalky brown or grey colour. They have narrow crescents around their necks that can give the appearance of a collar. When perched or in flight, the Collared Dove’s wingtips are darker than the rest of the wing.
Male and female Collared Doves look identical in appearance and often have broad white patches in their tails.
Adult Collared Doves:
Behaviours of a Collared Dove
You’ll probably see a Collared Dove perching on a lamppost, in a tree or on a rooftop. They’re also known to pay a visit to bird tables. They are considered friendly birds and some may even eat food out of your hand.
The Collared Dove call is a distinguishable, three-syllable coo and, when walking, you’ll see it bobbing its head and flicking its tail, similarly to other Doves and Pigeons.
Collared doves are very smart in that they typically breed and nest near human habitats for better access to food. Usually, their nests can be found within 1km of inhabited buildings.
Females lay two eggs in their nest, which the female will then incubate during the night and the male will incubate during the day. This process lasts between 14 and 18 days, with the young Collared Dove hatching after this.
Collared Dove habitats
Interestingly, Eurasian Collared Doves only came to the UK in the 1950s after spreading across Europe from the Middle East. Despite this, they can now be found all across the UK. You will find the Collared Dove near towns and villages, and they are well-known to visit gardens too.
They quickly spread across the US in the 1970s after 50 Collared Doves escaped captivity in the Bahamas and spread to Florida. Today in the US, similarly to the UK, they can be found in almost every state.
If you spot a Collared Dove, don’t forget to log it in our Kennedy Wild Bird Food Birdspotter app!
What do Collared Doves eat?
Collared Doves will eat many foods, including seeds and cereal grains such as millet, sunflower, wheat or corn. Grab some of their favourite wild bird seed mix if you’re looking to attract these beautiful birds into your garden.