My adventures in the woods, streams, rivers, fields, and lakes of Michigan

Mourning Dove, Zenaida macroura

Mourning Dove, Zenaida macroura,  its plaintive woo-OO-oo-oo-oo call gives the bird its name.

The Mourning Dove occupies a wide variety of open and semi-open habitats, such as urban areas, farms, prairie, grassland, and lightly wooded areas. It avoids swamps and thick forest. The species has adapted well to areas altered by humans. It commonly nests in trees in cities or near farmsteads.

Mourning Doves eat almost exclusively seeds, which make up more than 99% of their diet. Rarely, they will eat snails or insects. Mourning Doves generally eat enough to fill their crops and then fly away to digest while resting. They often swallow grit such as fine gravel or sand to assist with digestion. The species usually forages on the ground, walking but not hopping. At bird feeders, Mourning Doves are attracted to one of the largest ranges of seed types of any North American bird, with a preference for canola, corn, millet,safflower, and sunflower seeds. Mourning Doves do not dig or scratch for seeds, instead eating what is readily visible.

They are one of the earliest nesters here in Michigan, and are prolific breeders. In warmer areas, these birds may raise up to six broods in a season, although three is the average in Michigan, with an average of two eggs per brood. The Mourning Dove is monogamous and forms strong pair bonds.

They are fast fliers, capable of speeds up to 88 km/h (55 mph). (That may be why I have yet to get a good shot of one in flight) Their wings can make an unusual whistling sound upon take-off and landing.

On to the photos.

Mourning dove

Mourning dove

Mourning dove

Mourning dove

Mourning dove

Mourning dove

Mourning dove

Mourning dove

Mourning dove

Mourning dove

Mourning dove

Mourning dove

Mourning dove

Mourning dove

Mourning dove

Mourning dove

Mourning dove

Mourning dove

Mourning dove

Mourning dove

Mourning dove

Mourning dove

This is number 30 in my photo life list, only 320 to go!

That’s it for this one, thanks for stopping by!

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