doves in georgia

amazing 4 types of doves in illinois

Nestled in the heart of the American Midwest lies Illinois, a state of picturesque landscapes and diverse wildlife. Amidst its tranquil forests, sprawling prairies, and serene wetlands, there exists a group of birds that captivate both birdwatching enthusiasts and nature lovers alike – the doves. These gentle and elegant birds, known for their soft cooing calls and graceful flight, grace the skies of Illinois with their presence. In this exploration, we will embark on a journey to discover amazing 4 types of doves in Illinois that call Illinois home, each with its unique charm and significance in the state’s rich natural tapestry. From the mourning dove’s mournful melody to the elusive Eurasian collared dove’s exotic origin, these avian wonders provide an intriguing glimpse into the vibrant avian life that thrives in the Land of Lincoln. Join us as we delve into the fascinating world of Illinois’ doves, where beauty, diversity, and a touch of mystery await around every corner.

Here are some best practices and tips for observing the amazing four types of doves in Illinois:

  1. Learn Their Habits and Behaviors:
    • Start by researching the specific habits and behaviors of each dove species. Understanding their feeding patterns, preferred habitats, and daily routines will increase your chances of spotting them.
  2. Use Binoculars or a Field Guide:
    • Invest in a good pair of binoculars and a field guide specific to birds in Illinois. These tools can help you identify doves from a distance and learn more about their characteristics.
  3. Choose the Right Location:
    • Visit areas known for dove activity. Woodlands, agricultural fields, parks, and suburban areas are common habitats for these birds. Wildlife reserves and bird sanctuaries can also be excellent locations for birdwatching.
  4. Be Patient and Quiet:
    • Doves can be easily startled, so practice patience and move quietly when approaching their habitats. Find a comfortable spot to sit or stand and wait for the doves to come to you.
  5. Observe During Quiet Times:
    • Doves are often most active during the early morning and late afternoon. Plan your birdwatching outings during these times for the best chances of seeing them.
  6. Bring a Notebook or Smartphone:
    • Keep a notebook or smartphone handy to record your observations. Note the time, date, location, and any interesting behaviors you witness. This information can be valuable for future reference.
  7. Use a Bird Call App Sparingly:
    • Some birdwatchers use bird call apps to attract birds. While this can be effective, use these apps sparingly and ethically, as excessive use can stress the birds.
  8. Respect Wildlife and Their Environment:
    • Maintain a safe distance from the doves to avoid disturbing them. Do not approach nests or disturb their natural habitats. Follow ethical birdwatching guidelines to ensure the birds’ well-being.
  9. Stay Hidden and Blend In:
    • Wear neutral-colored clothing that blends into the environment. Doves are more likely to approach if they don’t perceive you as a threat.
  10. Be Mindful of Weather Conditions:
    • Weather can impact dove activity. Overcast days might encourage them to forage longer, while extreme weather conditions may keep them hidden. Plan your outings accordingly.
  11. Keep a Safe Distance from Nesting Sites:
    • If you come across a dove’s nest, maintain a respectful distance and avoid lingering near it. Disturbing nests can harm both adult doves and their young.
  12. Join Birdwatching Groups:
    • Consider joining local birdwatching clubs or groups in Illinois. They often have experienced members who can provide valuable insights and share their favorite birdwatching spots.
  13. Practice Responsible Bird Photography:
    • If you’re into bird photography, use a telephoto lens to capture images from a distance. Avoid getting too close to the birds, which can stress them.
  14. Share Your Observations:
    • Share your dove observations and photographs with local birdwatching communities and organizations. Your data can contribute to conservation efforts and research.
  15. Enjoy the Experience:
    • Remember that birdwatching is not just about ticking species off a list. Take the time to appreciate the beauty and diversity of these doves and their natural surroundings.

list of amazing 4 types of doves in illinois

  1. Eurasian Collared-Dove
  2. white-winged dove
  3. mourning dove
  4. rock pigeon

1. Eurasian Collared-Dove

Eurasian Collared-Dove
Eurasian Collared-Dove

scientific name: Streptopelia decaocto

size: The Eurasian Collared-Dove (Streptopelia decaocto) is a medium-sized dove species. It typically measures about 32 to 35 centimeters (12.6 to 13.8 inches) in length from beak to tail.

how to identify:

  1. Coloration:
    • Their plumage is primarily pale gray or beige, with slightly darker gray on the wings and back.
    • A prominent black “collar” or crescent-shaped patch can be seen on the back of the neck, which is a key identifying feature.
    • The tail feathers have a broad white tip, which is visible in flight.
  2. Head and Face:
    • The head is a pale grayish color and lacks distinct markings.
    • They have a small, black line extending from the base of the bill to the eye.
  3. Bill and Eyes:
    • Eurasian Collared-Doves have a dark-colored bill that is relatively short and slender.
    • Their eyes are dark, often appearing black.


  1. Urban and Suburban Areas: Eurasian Collared-Doves are often associated with human settlements. They are commonly found in cities, towns, and suburban neighborhoods, where they take advantage of food sources provided by people, such as bird feeders and discarded food.
  2. Open Country: These doves also inhabit open, semi-open, and agricultural areas. They can be seen in fields, farmlands, and grasslands, where they forage for seeds and grains.
  3. Woodland Edges: Eurasian Collared-Doves may be found at the edges of woodlands and forested areas, especially if there are clearings or fields nearby.
  4. Parks and Gardens: They frequently visit parks, botanical gardens, and cultivated landscapes, where they can find a variety of food sources and suitable perching sites.
  5. Coastal Regions: In some regions, Eurasian Collared-Doves are found along coastlines and near bodies of water. They may inhabit coastal towns and areas with a mix of urban and natural environments.
  6. Desert Areas: In arid regions, these doves can be found in oases, urban areas within deserts, and places where water sources are available.


The Eurasian Collared-Dove (Streptopelia decaocto) has a primarily herbivorous diet, primarily consisting of seeds and grains. Here are the main components of their diet:

  1. Seeds: Seeds make up a significant portion of the Eurasian Collared-Dove’s diet. They feed on a variety of seeds from plants such as grasses, weeds, and cultivated crops like sunflower seeds, millet, and grains. In urban areas, they are known to feed on birdseed from feeders.
  2. Grains: They often forage in agricultural fields and may consume grains like wheat, corn, and oats when they are available.
  3. Fruits: While seeds and grains are their primary food source, Eurasian Collared-Doves may also eat fruits on occasion, especially during the fruiting season. They may feed on berries and small fruits.
  4. Insects: Although their diet is predominantly plant-based, they may consume insects, especially during the breeding season. Insects can provide a source of protein for both adults and their chicks.
  5. Human Food: In urban and suburban environments, Eurasian Collared-Doves are known to scavenge for human food scraps and may visit bird feeders filled with seeds or grains.

lifespan: The lifespan of Eurasian Collared-Doves (Streptopelia decaocto) in the wild is typically around 3 to 5 years.

wingspan: The wingspan of the Eurasian Collared-Dove (Streptopelia decaocto) typically ranges from approximately 47 to 55 centimeters (about 18.5 to 21.7 inches).


Eurasian Collared-Doves (Streptopelia decaocto) are known for their distinctive cooing calls, which are often used for identification. Their vocalizations are relatively simple and repetitive. Here are the common calls of Eurasian Collared-Doves:

  1. Coo-COO-coo: This is the most well-known call of the Eurasian Collared-Dove. It consists of a soft and rhythmic series of three cooing sounds, with the second coo being slightly louder and longer than the others. It is often described as “coo-COO-coo” and may be repeated several times in succession. This call is most frequently heard during the breeding season and is used by males to establish territories and attract females.
  2. Descending Coos: In addition to the classic “coo-COO-coo” call, Eurasian Collared-Doves may produce variations of cooing sounds. These can include descending coos, where the pitch of the cooing sound gradually lowers, creating a melodious and soothing sound.


Eurasian Collared-Doves (Streptopelia decaocto) are known for their adaptability to a wide range of environmental conditions, and their behavior can vary depending on the seasons. Here’s a general overview of their activity and behavior in different seasons:

  1. Breeding Season (Spring and Summer): During the spring and summer months, which are their breeding season, Eurasian Collared-Doves become more active in terms of courtship and nest-building. Males engage in courtship displays, which often include cooing calls to attract females. They build nests, which are simple platforms of sticks and twigs, usually in trees or shrubs, though they can also nest in more sheltered urban locations like buildings or on ledges.
  2. Nesting and Raising Young (Spring and Summer): After mating, females typically lay two eggs, and both parents take turns incubating them. The eggs hatch after about two weeks, and both parents participate in feeding and caring for the chicks. Eurasian Collared-Doves may raise multiple broods in a single breeding season.
  3. Post-Breeding Season (Late Summer and Fall): As summer progresses into late summer and early fall, Eurasian Collared-Doves continue to feed on seeds and grains, often in agricultural fields. They may also be seen foraging on the ground in urban and suburban areas.
  4. Winter Season (Late Fall and Winter): In the winter months, Eurasian Collared-Doves remain relatively active but may form larger flocks, especially in areas where food sources are abundant. They continue to feed on seeds and grains but may also forage for other food sources, such as berries and fruits if available.

2. white-winged dove

white winged dove
white winged dove

scientific name: Zenaida asiatica

size: The white-winged dove (Zenaida asiatica) is a medium-sized dove species. It typically measures about 9 to 10 inches (23 to 25 centimeters) in length

how to identify:

  1. Plumage:
    • Overall pale grayish-brown plumage with a slightly pinkish tinge on the underparts.
    • Prominent white wing patches or bars on the upper wings, a distinctive feature.
    • White edging on the tail feathers.
    • Dark eyes with a red ring around them.
  2. Face and Bill:
    • The face is bluish-gray with a white patch around the eye.
    • Dark, slender bill with a slight curve at the tip.
  3. Habitat and Range:
    • White-winged doves are commonly found in the southwestern United States, Mexico, and parts of Central America.
    • They prefer a variety of habitats, including desert regions, urban areas, and woodlands.
  4. Behavior and Vocalization:
    • White-winged doves often forage on the ground for seeds and fruits.
    • Their call is a distinctive cooing sound, which is a series of soft, mournful “who-cooks-for-you” or “hoo, hoo, hoo” coos.
  5. Flight:
    • In flight, look for the white wing patches that are visible as the bird flaps its wings.


  1. Desert Areas: White-winged doves are often associated with arid and desert regions. They are known to inhabit areas with cacti, mesquite trees, and desert scrub. These birds can find food and water sources in desert ecosystems.
  2. Urban and Suburban Areas: White-winged doves have adapted well to human-altered landscapes. They are frequently seen in urban and suburban environments, including parks, gardens, and residential areas. They may take advantage of bird feeders and water sources provided by humans.
  3. Woodlands and Forest Edges: In some regions, white-winged doves can be found in wooded areas, including oak woodlands, pine forests, and forest edges. They may nest in trees and forage for food in the surrounding vegetation.
  4. Agricultural Lands: White-winged doves are known to inhabit agricultural areas, especially where crops such as grains, sunflowers, and other seeds are cultivated. These areas provide a source of food.
  5. Riparian Zones: They are often associated with riparian habitats, which are areas along rivers, streams, and other water bodies. These zones can provide both food and water resources for the doves.
  6. Subtropical and Tropical Regions: In addition to their presence in arid and semi-arid regions, white-winged doves are also found in subtropical and tropical habitats, including coastal areas and lowland forests.


The white-winged dove (Zenaida asiatica) has a primarily herbivorous diet, consisting mainly of plant materials. Their diet can vary depending on the season and the availability of food, but here are the main components of their diet:

  1. Seeds: White-winged doves are particularly fond of seeds and are often seen foraging for various types of seeds. They commonly feed on seeds from plants such as sunflowers, wildflowers, grasses, and grains. They can be attracted to bird feeders that offer seeds.
  2. Fruits: They also consume a variety of fruits, especially during the fruiting season. Common fruits in their diet include berries, small fruits, and the pulpy fruits of desert plants like saguaro cacti.
  3. Flowers: White-winged doves may feed on nectar from flowers, particularly when other food sources are scarce. They use their specialized bill to access nectar.
  4. Leaves: While their diet is primarily seed-based, white-winged doves may occasionally consume small, tender leaves and shoots from plants.
  5. Insects: Although plant matter makes up the bulk of their diet, white-winged doves may consume insects and other small invertebrates on occasion. However, this is not a significant part of their diet.

lifespan: The lifespan of a white-winged dove (Zenaida asiatica) typically ranges from 5 to 12 years in the wild.

wingspan: The wingspan of a white-winged dove (Zenaida asiatica) typically ranges from approximately 17 to 18 inches (43 to 46 centimeters).


The white-winged dove (Zenaida asiatica) is known for its distinctive cooing calls. Their vocalizations are often described as mournful and soft. Here are some of the common calls and sounds made by white-winged doves:

  1. Cooing Call: The most characteristic call of the white-winged dove is a series of soft, mournful coos that sound like “who-cooks-for-you” or “hoo, hoo, hoo.” This call is often repeated several times and is used for communication between birds.
  2. Advertising Call: During the breeding season, male white-winged doves may engage in an advertising call to attract females. This call is a series of repeated coos that can be more frequent and pronounced than their typical cooing.
  3. Nesting Calls: White-winged doves may also make soft clucking or purring sounds when they are at the nest, tending to their eggs or young. These sounds are used to communicate with their mate and offspring.
  4. Agitated Calls: When disturbed or threatened, white-winged doves may emit a series of rapid coos or take flight while making sharp, loud wing noises.
  5. Flight Calls: While in flight, these doves often produce a distinct whistling sound from the movement of their wings. This can be a helpful clue for identifying them when they are not visible.


White-winged doves (Zenaida asiatica) are known for their migratory behavior and can be found in various regions throughout the year. The seasons of the white-winged dove can be summarized as follows:

  1. Breeding Season (Spring and Summer): White-winged doves typically breed during the spring and early summer months, which can vary by region. In the southwestern United States, for example, their breeding season often begins in March or April and extends through June or July. During this time, they establish territories, build nests, and raise their young.
  2. Migration (Late Summer and Fall): In late summer and early fall, white-winged doves may undergo migration. Some populations, particularly those from northern areas, migrate southward to warmer regions for the winter. The timing and extent of this migration can vary, and not all white-winged doves migrate.
  3. Non-breeding Season (Fall and Winter): During the non-breeding season, which coincides with fall and winter, white-winged doves that do not migrate remain in their wintering habitats. In regions with mild winters, they may continue to be active and forage for food. In colder regions, they may become less active and conserve energy.
  4. Year-round Residents (In Some Regions): In areas with mild or temperate climates, some white-winged doves may remain year-round residents and do not undertake long-distance migrations. They may continue to breed and feed throughout the year.

3. mourning dove

mourning dove
mourning dove

scientific name: Zenaida macroura

size: White-winged doves (Zenaida asiatica) are medium-sized doves with an average length of approximately 28 to 31 centimeters (11 to 12 inches).

how to identify:

  1. White Wing Patches: The most distinctive feature of White-winged doves is the white wing patch that is visible when they are in flight. When perched, the white wing patches are not as conspicuous, but they become very apparent when the bird takes off.
  2. Size and Shape: White-winged doves are medium-sized doves with a plump body, relatively long tail, and a round head. They have a general dove-like shape, but their white wing patches set them apart.
  3. Plumage: White-winged doves have a pale grayish-brown overall plumage with a pinkish hue on their underparts. They may also have a faint bluish-gray crown on their heads. Look for subtle variations in coloration.
  4. Eye Ring: These doves often have a distinct, bright red eye ring that encircles their dark eyes. This feature is quite noticeable and can help in identification.
  5. Bill Color: White-winged doves have a pale, bluish-gray bill.


  1. Desert Areas: White-winged doves are often associated with arid and semi-arid desert regions. They are frequently found in areas with cacti, mesquite trees, and other desert vegetation.
  2. Woodlands: They can also be found in woodlands, particularly those with open understory and a mix of deciduous and evergreen trees. Oak woodlands are a good example of this type of habitat.
  3. Urban and Suburban Areas: White-winged doves have adapted to human-altered landscapes and are commonly seen in urban and suburban areas, especially where there are suitable food sources such as bird feeders, grains, and seeds.
  4. Agricultural Areas: These doves are often found in agricultural regions, where they feed on cultivated crops like grains, sunflower seeds, and fruits. They may also visit farms and orchards.
  5. Riparian Habitats: White-winged doves can be found near rivers, streams, and other water sources, especially during the breeding season when they require water for nesting and drinking.
  6. Brushy Areas: They are known to inhabit brushy areas, including thornscrub and chaparral, where they can find shelter and food.
  7. Parks and Gardens: White-winged doves are adaptable and may frequent parks, botanical gardens, and residential gardens where suitable vegetation and food sources are available.
  8. Coastal Regions: In some parts of their range, White-winged doves can be found along the coast, particularly in Mexico and Central America.


  1. Seeds: White-winged doves are primarily granivorous, meaning they feed extensively on seeds. They have a particular affinity for seeds of various plant species. Some of their favored seeds include:
    • Desert seeds: They feed on seeds from desert plants like mesquite, saguaro cactus, and various grasses.
    • Agricultural crops: In areas near farmland, they often consume grains such as corn, wheat, and sunflower seeds.
    • Wildflowers: During the flowering season, they may feed on the seeds of wildflowers and other herbaceous plants.
    • Weed seeds: They are known to consume the seeds of various weeds.
  2. Fruits: White-winged doves also incorporate fruits into their diet, especially during the summer and fall when fruits are abundant. They may eat berries, figs, grapes, and other fruits that are available in their habitat.
  3. Insects: While seeds and fruits are their primary food sources, White-winged doves will occasionally consume insects, especially during the breeding season. Insects provide a source of protein for both adult doves and their chicks.
  4. Foraging Behavior: White-winged doves are often seen foraging on the ground or in low vegetation. They use their strong bills to crack open seeds and eat the contents. They may also glean fruits from trees and shrubs. These doves are known to visit bird feeders if provided with appropriate seeds.
  5. Water: White-winged doves require access to water for drinking and bathing, especially in arid regions. They are known to visit water sources such as bird baths and shallow ponds.

lifespan: On average, these doves typically have a lifespan of 2 to 5 years in the wild.

wingspan: The wingspan of White-winged doves (Zenaida asiatica) typically ranges from approximately 41 to 44 centimeters (16 to 17 inches).


White-winged doves (Zenaida asiatica) are known for their distinctive cooing calls, which can vary in tone and pitch. These calls are often heard during their breeding season and while they are foraging or perched in trees. Here are some common calls and sounds associated with White-winged doves:

  1. Cooing Call: White-winged doves produce a soft, mournful cooing sound that is sometimes described as “who-cooks-for-you” or “who-who-who.” This cooing call is often used by males during courtship displays to attract females.
  2. Wing Whistle: When White-winged doves take off and land, their wing feathers can produce a distinctive whistling or whirring sound. This sound is created by the rapid movement of their wings and is especially noticeable during flight.
  3. Nesting Calls: While near their nests, White-winged doves may make various sounds, including soft coos and chattering sounds. These sounds can be part of their courtship and communication with their mate and nestlings.
  4. Alarm Calls: When White-winged doves perceive a potential threat, they may produce alarm calls to alert others in the flock. These calls can be sharper and more rapid compared to their typical cooing.
  5. Contact Calls: White-winged doves use contact calls to communicate with other doves in their flock while foraging or moving through their habitat. These calls help maintain group cohesion.


  1. Breeding Season (Spring and Summer):
    • Breeding season for White-winged doves typically occurs in the spring and early summer. The timing can vary depending on the local climate and latitude.
    • During this season, males engage in courtship displays, which include cooing calls and aerial displays to attract females.
    • Nesting takes place, and pairs may build their nests in trees, shrubs, or other suitable locations.
    • Eggs are laid, and both male and female doves share incubation and chick-rearing duties.
  2. Migration (Some Populations):
    • In some regions, White-winged doves are known to undertake short-distance migrations in response to changing environmental conditions, particularly in response to food availability and weather.
    • Some populations may migrate to areas with more abundant food resources during the non-breeding season.
  3. Non-Breeding Season (Fall and Winter):
    • During the fall and winter months, White-winged doves may disperse more widely in search of food, especially if local food sources become scarce.
    • They often feed on seeds and fruits that are available during this time, including agricultural crops.
  4. Year-Round Residents (Some Populations):
    • In regions with milder climates and year-round food availability, White-winged doves may remain in the same area throughout the year.
  5. Food Availability and Climate Influence:
    • White-winged doves’ movements and behaviors are strongly influenced by food availability. They are known to be opportunistic feeders and may shift their ranges in response to the abundance of seeds and fruits.
    • Climate, particularly in arid and semi-arid regions, can also impact their movements and behaviors. Access to water sources is crucial for their survival.

4. rock pigeon

rock pigeon
rock pigeon

scientific name: Columba livia

size: Length: Approximately 30 to 36 centimeters (12 to 14 inches)

how to identify:

  1. Coloration:
    • Rock pigeons often have bluish-gray feathers on their backs and wings.
    • Their heads and necks are typically a lighter gray with iridescent patches around the neck.
    • The breast area is light gray or beige, and the underparts may be slightly darker.
  2. Markings:
    • Look for two black stripes on the wings that form a distinctive “M” shape when the wings are folded.
    • Some rock pigeons have darker markings on their shoulders and rump.
  3. Eyes:
    • Rock pigeons have orange or reddish-orange eyes with a white eye ring.
  4. Bill:
    • Their bills are relatively short and stout, with a small cere (fleshy patch) at the base.
  5. Legs and Feet: The legs and feet of rock pigeons are typically pinkish or purplish in color.


  1. Urban Areas: Rock pigeons are most commonly found in cities and towns. They thrive in urban environments where there are plenty of buildings, ledges, and structures for nesting and roosting. They are often seen perched on rooftops, window sills, and city landmarks.
  2. Suburban Areas: Suburban neighborhoods with houses and commercial buildings also provide suitable habitats for rock pigeons. They can nest and forage in these areas.
  3. Agricultural Lands: Rock pigeons may also be found in rural areas, particularly near farms and agricultural fields. They can feed on grains and seeds in open fields.
  4. Cliffs and Rock Outcrops: In their natural habitat, rock pigeons often inhabit cliffs, rocky outcrops, and coastal areas. These locations mimic the rocky cliffs that they historically nested on, hence their name.
  5. Parks and Public Spaces: Rock pigeons can be found in parks, recreational areas, and public squares, especially if there are food sources like discarded food scraps or bird feeders.
  6. Transportation Hubs: Airports, train stations, and bus terminals often attract rock pigeons due to the sheltered spaces and potential food sources available in these areas.
  7. Landfills: Rock pigeons may frequent landfills and garbage dumps where they scavenge for food among discarded waste.
  8. Industrial Areas: Areas with factories and industrial buildings can also be home to rock pigeons, as they may find suitable nesting and roosting sites in such environments.
  9. Coastal Areas: Along coastlines, rock pigeons may be found near cliffs, piers, and docks. They are known to roost on structures along the coast.


  1. Seeds and Grains: Pigeons primarily feed on seeds and grains, such as wheat, corn, barley, and oats. They are often seen foraging on the ground for these food sources.
  2. Fruits and Berries: Rock pigeons may consume various fruits and berries, especially when in season. They can often be observed pecking at fallen fruits in orchards and gardens.
  3. Green Vegetation: Pigeons may eat green vegetation, including leaves, grasses, and clover.
  4. Human Food: In urban areas, rock pigeons are notorious for scavenging human food scraps. They often feed on bread, crumbs, and other discarded food items in parks and city streets.
  5. Insects: While not a primary food source, pigeons will occasionally consume insects and insect larvae when they encounter them.
  6. Water: Like all birds, pigeons require access to fresh water for drinking.
  7. Supplemental Bird Feed: In some locations, people provide supplemental bird feed, such as birdseed mixes, to attract pigeons and other birds to feeders.
  8. Grit: Pigeons also ingest small pebbles or grit to aid in digestion. The grit helps grind down hard seeds and grains in their gizzards.

lifespan: In general, the average lifespan of a wild rock pigeon is typically around 3 to 5 years.

wingspan: The wingspan of a rock pigeon (Columba livia) typically ranges from approximately 64 to 72 centimeters (25 to 28 inches).


  1. Cooing: The cooing call of rock pigeons is perhaps the most recognizable. It sounds like “coo-COO-coo” and is often repeated in a rhythmic pattern. The cooing call is frequently associated with courtship and mating behavior.
  2. Purring: Pigeons also produce a soft purring sound, which is often used when they are feeding or preening. It’s a contented and relaxed vocalization.
  3. Nesting Calls: When pigeons are at their nests, they may produce a variety of soft cooing sounds and chortles, especially when interacting with their mates or chicks.
  4. Alarm Calls: Pigeons have a set of alarm calls or warning coos that they use when they perceive a potential threat or danger. These calls are typically sharper and more urgent than their regular cooing.
  5. Wing Clapping: In flight, pigeons may make a distinctive clapping sound with their wings. This sound is produced when they abruptly change the angle of their wings.
  6. Bill Clapping: During courtship and territory disputes, pigeons may engage in bill-clapping displays, which produce a clapping sound as their bills come into contact.
  7. Bill Rattling: Pigeons can also produce a rattling sound by rapidly opening and closing their bills, often seen during courtship and social interactions.


Rock pigeons (Columba livia) do not adhere to distinct breeding seasons in the same way that many other bird species do. Instead, they have the ability to breed throughout the year, and their reproductive activity can be influenced by environmental conditions and the availability of food.

In regions with milder climates, such as temperate and subtropical areas, rock pigeons may breed year-round. However, in locations with more extreme seasonal variations, they may be more active in their breeding efforts during the spring and summer months when temperatures are warmer and food sources are more abundant.

Rock pigeons are highly adaptable birds, and their ability to reproduce year-round is one of the reasons they have been so successful in urban environments. They can take advantage of the stable and often food-rich conditions found in cities, which can support breeding efforts at any time of the year.

Overall, while rock pigeons may show some seasonal variation in their breeding activity, they are not strictly bound to specific breeding seasons like many other bird species. Their reproductive behavior is influenced by local environmental factors and the availability of resources.

frequently asked questions: on amazing 4 types of doves in illinois

What are the four types of doves found in Illinois?

The four types of doves commonly found in Illinois are the mourning dove, Eurasian collared dove, rock pigeon (also known as the common pigeon), and the elusive white-winged dove.

What is the most common dove species in Illinois?

The mourning dove is the most common dove species in Illinois. It’s known for its distinctive cooing call and widespread distribution throughout the state.

Are these doves native to Illinois, or did they migrate to the region?

Mourning doves are native to Illinois, while Eurasian collared doves and rock pigeons are non-native species that have established populations in the state. White-winged doves are occasional visitors to the region.

Where can I spot these doves in Illinois?

Mourning doves can be found in various habitats, including woodlands, agricultural fields, and urban areas. Eurasian collared doves and rock pigeons are often seen in suburban and urban settings. White-winged doves are sporadically observed during migration, mostly in southern Illinois.

What do these doves eat, and how do they forage for food?

Doves primarily feed on seeds and grains. They forage on the ground, using their beaks to pick up seeds and grains, and they are often seen near feeding stations or in agricultural fields.

Do any of these doves have unique behaviors or characteristics?

Mourning doves are known for their distinctive cooing calls and acrobatic flight displays during courtship. Eurasian collared doves are recognized by the black “collar” on their neck. Rock pigeons are well-known urban birds, often seen perched on buildings. White-winged doves are distinguished by their white wing patches.

Are these doves protected or hunted in Illinois?

Mourning doves are a game species and are hunted during designated seasons in Illinois. Eurasian collared doves and rock pigeons are not protected and can be hunted year-round. White-winged doves are protected under federal law and may not be hunted.

Are there any conservation efforts in place to protect these doves in Illinois?

Conservation efforts often focus on maintaining healthy populations of mourning doves and monitoring the impact of invasive species like Eurasian collared doves. Wildlife agencies and organizations also work to educate the public about the importance of preserving native wildlife.

Can I attract these doves to my backyard for birdwatching?

Yes, you can attract mourning doves, Eurasian collared doves, and rock pigeons to your backyard by providing bird feeders with suitable seeds. Mourning doves are particularly attracted to platforms and ground feeders.

What is the best time of year to observe these doves in Illinois?

Doves can be observed year-round in Illinois, but their activity may vary with the seasons. Mourning doves are most active in the summer, while white-winged doves are occasional visitors during migration.


In conclusion, the four remarkable types of doves that grace the landscapes of Illinois offer a captivating glimpse into the state’s rich avian diversity. From the ubiquitous mourning dove with its hauntingly beautiful call to the introduced Eurasian collared dove, the common rock pigeon, and the occasional visitor, the white-winged dove, each species brings its own unique charm to the state’s birdwatching tapestry.

Illinois, with its diverse habitats ranging from lush woodlands to fertile agricultural fields and urban oases, provides an ideal backdrop for observing these gentle birds. Whether you are a seasoned birdwatcher or a newcomer to the world of avian appreciation, observing these doves can be a rewarding and enriching experience.

However, as we revel in the beauty of these doves, it is vital to remember the importance of responsible birdwatching. Respecting their habitats, maintaining a safe distance, and following ethical guidelines ensures that these avian wonders continue to thrive in their natural environment.

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