Life in Christian County, Kentucky... More About Birds and Animals...
This mourning dove nest is about 20 feet up in a silver maple near our house. Mourning doves are well known for constructing flimsy nests, and this one could be described as "sprawling" as well.
During nesting, the male gathers the nest materials and lands on the female to hand it to her so she can work it into the nest. Somehow I missed seeing all that.
In summer, mourning doves inhabit all 48 contiguous states of the USA, and they winter throughout the continental USA except for the very coldest regions.
I believe mourning doves are the same bird that we called "turtle doves" during my Nebraska childhood. John James Audubon, the great naturalist and ornithologist, called them "Carolina pigeons."
Audubon thought that the closest relative of his Carolina pigeon was the now-extinct passenger-pigeon. I suppose that is correct, but I really don't know. I am too sleepy to research it tonight, so you're on your own if you decide to quote that fact.
- Cornell Lab info page with sound file of the mourning dove's call
- Chipper Woods Bird Observatory page about the mourning dove
- 1932 Smithsonian Institute info sheet about mourning doves