Mourning Dove


mourningDove1.jpgA gray or brownish bird, they are found all over the US and Mexico. Closely related to the pigeon and white-winged dove, these birds can grow up to a foot in length and weigh roughly 5 oz.

They are a migratory bird that spends most of their time in the North, but the minute it gets cold they fly south in packs of anywhere from 20-100 birds. They can live virtually anywhere – in cities, in fields, in forests – and feed primarily on seeds. (They also consume wheat, oats and corn.)

Doves feed twice a day, once in the morning and once at night, and after each time they proceed to pick up gravel to aid in digestion and water to wash it down with. (Since they always head to water after feeding, it’s a good idea to stake out some level, still water sources – odds are they’ll be there soon.)

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These birds tend to roost in dead trees that are close to their watering holes and on the edges of any heavy woods.



These birds are very difficult to kill – it usually takes 8 to 10 shots to down one due to its erratic, serrated flights and its above average speed (it can reach almost 60 mph)- but over 50 million are killed each year. Despite this fact, the population of doves on this continent still is well over 500 million.

Most hunters pass shoot the doves when they enter/leave feeding or watering areas and use a 12-gauge shotgun with a long barrel, 25-30 inches, and size 7 ½ or 8 shot.


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