Mourning Dove

Order: Columbiformes
Family: Columbidae
Genus: Zenaidura
Species: macroura

La. columba pigeon, dove
La. forma form, shape, kind
iLa. -idae appearance, resemblance
La. Zenaida for Zenaide Laetitia Julie, Princess Bonaparte, wife of French ornithologist Prince Charles Bonaparte
Gr. makros long
Gr. oura tail

Painting of mourning dove parents and juvenile perched on a large tree branch.
About twelve inches long. Grayish bluish brown upper parts with irregular black wing spots. Black spot on the cheek and a long narrow tail. Light creamy gray underside. Smaller than their pigeon cousins, they look somewhat distorted with their proportionately small head that bobs when they walk.
USGS map shows mourning doves range throughout the US and Canada and beyond up to the northern tree line.
Abundant, numbering in the hundreds of millions, inhabiting woodlands, groves, open areas, farms, towns and cities in North America from southern Canada, throughout the States, Central America to Panama and the Caribbean.
Flocks of doves frequent roadways, city streets and yards searching for gravel.

They sing the slow melancholy series of five whoos that give them their name. Their wings emit a rhythmic whistling in swift flight as fast as 35 miles per hour.

Pairs mate for life and remain solitary, mostly keeping to themselves and their immediate families during breeding and rearing seasons until the more northern located doves gather into small flocks before migrating.

Mourning doves make flimsy nests out of piles of loose sticks, leaves and trash on horizontal tree branches, stumps, bushes, rocks, on the ground, on building ledges and sometimes in platform style nest boxes.

Painting of mourning dove perched above a nest with eggs in a tree with a field and forest background.
Females lay two white eggs (rarely more), which hatch after about two weeks incubation and young leave the nest in about another two weeks. They regularly raise a second brood and sometimes as many as four in a season.

Platforms will more likely attract robins than mourning doves. Either bird family makes a pleasant display as a platform becomes a stage.

The Mourning Dove Platform has extra room under a gable roof for the larger back yard platform nesters: mourning doves, robins and blue jays. It has an 8″ by 8″ base, is about 8″ floor to ceiling and has an open front and partially open sides.

Assemble with corrosion resistant screws fit to pre-drilled countersunk pilot holes to reduce splitting wood.

Install a platform on the side of a garage, shed or porch under open shelter or an eave over looking both open spaces and foliage in your back yard from seven to twelve feet high.

Never install in a tree or near objects that cats and squirrels can climb. Squirrels can leap 8′ horizontally!

Platform nesting birds claim platforms that best simulate ledges on cliff faces which are difficult for predators to scale. They can also scan the surrounding area and below.

The Robin Nesting Platform has an 8″ by 8″ base, measures approximately 8″ floor to ceiling, has an open front and partially open sides.

If the location is under a roof, porch or eave, consider installing this Open Platform.

Visit the open nesting platform page.
Select to view or print the open platform plans.

Robins, blue jays and phoebes also may use these platforms.

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Mourning Dove

Painting of mourning dove parents and juvenile perched on a large tree branch.
Order: Columbiformes
Family: Columbidae
Genus: Zenaidura
Species: macroura

La. columba pigeon, dove
iLa. forma form, shape, kind
La. -idae appearance, resemblance
La. Zenaida for Zenaide Laetitia Julie, Princess Bonaparte, wife of French ornithologist Prince Charles Bonaparte
Gr. makros long
Gr. oura tail

USGS map shows mourning doves range throughout the US and Canada and beyond up to the northern tree line.
Abundant, numbering in the hundreds of millions, inhabiting woodlands, groves, open areas, farms, towns and cities in North America from southern Canada, throughout the States, Central America to Panama and the Caribbean.
Painting of mourning dove perched above a nest with eggs in a tree with a field and forest background.
Flocks of doves frequent roadways, city streets and yards searching for gravel.

They sing the slow melancholy series of five whoos that give them their name. Their wings emit a rhythmic whistling in swift flight as fast as 35 miles per hour.

Pairs mate for life and remain solitary, mostly keeping to themselves and their immediate families during breeding and rearing seasons until the more northern located doves gather into small flocks before migrating.

Mourning doves make flimsy nests out of piles of loose sticks, leaves and trash on horizontal tree branches, stumps, bushes, rocks, on the ground, on building ledges and sometimes in platform style nest boxes.

Females lay two white eggs (rarely more), which hatch after about two weeks incubation and young leave the nest in about another two weeks. They regularly raise a second brood and sometimes as many as four in a season.

Platforms will more likely attract robins than mourning doves. Either bird family makes a pleasant display as a platform becomes a stage.

Select to view the Mourning Dove Platform web page.
Select to view or print the Mourning Dove Shelter plans.
The Mourning Dove Platform has extra room under a gable roof for the larger back yard platform nesters: mourning doves, robins and blue jays. It has an 8″ by 8″ base, is about 8″ floor to ceiling and has an open front and partially open sides.

Assemble with corrosion resistant screws fit to pre-drilled countersunk pilot holes to reduce splitting wood.

Install a platform on the side of a garage, shed or porch under open shelter or an eave over looking both open spaces and foliage in your back yard from seven to twelve feet high.

Never install in a tree or near objects that cats and squirrels can climb. Squirrels can leap 8′ horizontally!

Platform nesting birds claim platforms that best simulate ledges on cliff faces which are difficult for predators to scale. They can also scan the surrounding area and below.

Select to view the Robin Platform web page.
Select to view or print the Robin Shelter plans.
The Robin Nesting Platform has an 8″ by 8″ base, measures approximately 8″ floor to ceiling, has an open front and partially open sides.

If the location is under a roof, porch or eave, consider installing this Open Platform.

Visit the open nesting platform page.
Select to view or print the open platform plans.

Robins, blue jays and phoebes also may use these platforms.

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