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Doves in Florida: Nature’s Peaceful Presence

Doves in Florida

Spotting doves in Florida is harder than it seems because you have to tell apart different types of doves and similar birds. In Florida doves are among the most popular bird species.

They enjoy the warm weather which is just one of several factors that contribute to this. There are several different types of doves in Florida. To attract mates or interact with other birds they make a humming noise.

Types of Doves in Florida

In Florida you can find several different species of dove some of which I have discussed here:

Common Ground Dove

Common Ground Dove
Common Ground Dove

The Common Ground Doves (Columbina passerina) are little Florida birds approximately the size of sparrows. These are brownish grey in color with chestnut tones on the feathers and a round tail. Its wings have dark markings. Because of their small size and faint dusty hue.

These birds are difficult to see on the ground. Another method to recognize them is by their repeating cooing cry. Which is heard even if you can not see the bird since it is hidden in a thick brush.

They eat seeds and insects and prefer living in grassy areas. These doves are particularly vocal. At any time of the year they are audible throughout the entire day.

Because they lay their eggs on the ground they are prey to predators. This explains how these doves can blend in with their environment because of their excellent camouflage.

Mourning Doves in Florida

Lovely Mourning Dove (Zenaida macroura) is found in Mexico and the United States and is one of the most popular types of doves in Florida. With a pale underside this bird is almost totally grayish brown in color.

You will see a little black dot on its face and its wings and tail look pointy. When you look closer you can tell it is a Mourning Dove by its grayish blue eye ring, pink legs, pointy tail and pink toes.

They frequently make their nests in trees and eat seeds, grass, and insects as food. Male and female appearances are identical. Mourning doves Unique call can be heard from a great distance.

These birds are frequently observed in parks, suburban areas and agricultural fields where they feed on seeds. They are calm birds who reside in groups of up to 100 other birds.

White Winged Dove

White Winged Dove
White Winged Dove

Historically remote desert areas were home to the White winged Dove (Zenaida asiatica). These doves in Florida can also be found along Florida’s Gulf Coast in coastal areas outside of the breeding season. It is now a typical breeding bird in cities and towns all over the southern US including south Florida.

A black mark on its cheek and bright orange eye with a pale blue eye ring are other unique characteristics. You can tell this species by the white spots on its wings. These spots are easiest to see when it’s flying in the air.

They enjoy living in open environments like savannas, deserts and suburban regions. They eat seeds and fruits. It typically lays two eggs and constructs its nests on the ground or in low trees. They are bigger than Mourning Doves.

Eurasian Collared Dove

Beautiful Eurasian Collared Dove (Streptopelia decaocto) is a frequent nesting bird in Florida’s urban environments. Its black half collar on the neck helps to keep predators away.

You can also see white patches on the tail when the dove flies up from ground. It is an attractive bird with beautiful feathers. Because of their habitat these famous doves in Florida are at risk.

It is nevertheless a well liked bird for birdwatching and is usually regarded as a typical urban bird in spite of this.

These doves spread out a lot after the breeding season even though they don’t fly to new places. This makes them show up in areas where they don’t usually have babies.

African Collared Doves

Beautiful African Collared Doves
Beautiful African Collared Doves

African Collared Doves commonly referred to as African Turtle Doves (Streptopelia roseogrisea). Although it has a unique black collar around the nape of the neck and a similar look to the Eurasian Collared Dove.

This species is typically smaller and has more grayish brown feathers. It eats fruits, seeds and grains for food. They can be distinguished from one another based on the color of their under tail coverts.

It has dark grey under tail coverts compared to the African Collared white Dove’s. African Collared quiet Dove’s purring melody is considerably distinct from the Eurasian Collared Dove’s cooing song.

Zenaida Dove

Other famous doves in Florida are the Zenaida doves (Zenaida aurita) that migrate through the southern United States. Zenaida dove measures about 28 to 30 cm.

It resembles the mourning dove in appearance. But it is a smaller more rounded tail and is slightly darker in color. They are a species of dove recognized for their stunning blue and green feathers.

Zenaida flower which serves as these birds’ primary food source throughout their trip inspired the name of Zenaida dove. It migrates to Mexico or Florida in the winter to escape the cold.

Inca Doves in Florida

Inca Dove Beautiful Doves in Florida
Inca Dove Beautiful Doves in Florida

Florida is home to a little grey dove known as the Inca Dove (Columbina Inca). You can find them in large groups and they make a high pitched cooing sound. Inca Dove has beautiful feathers which is why people like to have them as pets and study them.

Even though not many studies have been done this bird is thought to be rare. People believe it might disappear forever. Their food varies seasonally and consists primarily of insects and tiny seeds. In cities they may eat on bird feeders or garbage.

One of the rare wild dove species that makes its nests in high altitude areas is the Inca dove. It typically lays two eggs and builds its nest by filling a protected hollow in a tree or rock with sticks.

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Bottom Line

Doves in Florida are the most important species and are frequently visible throughout the year. But they are most common in spring and summer. Their presence helps to support state’s unique wildlife. They bring a sense of calm to both rural and urban regions which is a pleasant sight in state.