Thursday, January 30, 2014

Mourning Dove

Mourning Dove
The Mourning Dove  is a member of the dove family . The bird is also called the Turtle Dove or the American Mourning Dove or Rain Dove and formerly was known as the Carolina Pigeon or Carolina Turtledove. It is one of the most abundant and widespread of all North American birds. It is also the leading game bird, with more than 20 million birds  shot annually in the U.S both for sport and for meat. Its ability to sustain its population under such pressure stems from its prolific breeding: in warm areas one pair may raise up to six broods a year. Its plaintive woo call gives the bird its name. The wings can make an unusual whistling sound upon take off and landing. The bird is a strong flier capable of speeds up to 88 km/h. Mourning Doves are light grey and brown and generally muted in color. Males and females are similar in appearance. The species is generally monogamous, with two squabs  per brood. Both parents incubate and care for the young. Mourning Doves eat almost exclusively seeds, but the young are fed crop milk by their parents.The Mourning Dove has a large range of nearly 11,000,000 km 2 . The species is resident throughout the Greater Antilles most of Mexico the Continental United States, and southern Canada. Much of the Canadian prairies sees these birds in summer only and southern Central America sees them in winter only. The species is a vagrant in northern Canada. Alaska and South America. It has been spotted as an accidental at least seven times in the Western Pale arctic with records from the British Isles  the Azores and Iceland .In 1963 the Mourning Dove was introduced to Hawaii and in 1998 there was still a small population in North Kano. The Mourning Dove also appeared on Socorro Island, off the Western coast of Mexico in 1988 sixteen years after the Socorro Dove was extirpated from that island.


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