Tag Archive | eurasian collared-dove

Winter’s lingering grasp in Inglewood Bird Sanctuary

Posted by Dan Arndt

Another cold, snowy, and dull day here in Calgary. The Sunday curse has struck again, leaving us with a bitterly cold north wind, and the least bird activity we’ve seen all spring. While we did get some decent new birds for the year, and a couple of great surprises while walking in Inglewood Bird Sanctuary on Sunday, our participant numbers were still low, and so were the species we found.

Inglewood Bird Sanctuary

Inglewood Bird Sanctuary

While the wind was blowing and the skies were grey, our first new species of the day was the Eurasian Collared-Dove. I don’t know that I’ve ever actually seen one of these birds inside the bird sanctuary, or so it was a nice find!

Eurasian Collared-Dove

Eurasian Collared-Dove

As we approached the river, we were on the lookout for the Mountain Bluebirds that I had seen earlier in the week, but instead we happened across a group of American Pipits on the river bank, with a brief stop out on the nearest gravel bar before heading up stream.

American Pipits

American Pipits

As we watched the pipits and scanned the far bank, we were lucky enough to spot a Franklin’s Gull fly in and land among a few other gulls, but given how far it was, getting a clear shot was quite the challenge.

Franklin's Gull

Franklin’s Gull

We soon came upon a lone Coyote raiding a Canada Goose nest, and saw him stealing away an egg. Sad for the geese, but there were many pairs successfully nesting in the sanctuary, and their numbers really are ever in question. This one was seen nesting in the same cavity that I’ve seen her in for the last three years at least.

Canada Goose

Canada Goose

Our last surprise of the day was a second small flock of Bohemian Waxwings going down to the river for a drink before flying off. They stopped briefly for us before flying off, hopefully symbolizing the end of the winter weather and bringing on spring in full force!

Good birding!

Backyard Birds: Eurasian Collared-Dove

For the past two weeks I’ve had two Eurasian Collared-Doves, likely a breeding pair, coming to my yard every day.  They feed on the lawn (lately, on the snow), eating sunflower seeds that have spilled from the bird feeders.


Eurasian Collared-Doves are not yet a common backyard bird in Calgary, but that may change.  They were introduced to North America in the Bahamas in the 1970’s and have rapidly spread across the continent.  I think they were first reported in Alberta in 2003, and in Calgary in 2004.  I know of two pairs that have nested in the SE quadrant of the city in each of the past two years:  one pair in Shepard, and another in Dover. 

This bird has an odd broken feather sticking out on its left side, so I know it’s the same bird returning each day.

Eurasian Collared-Doves are pale buff-grey to pinkish-grey in colour.  They are about the same length as a Rock Pigeon, but slimmer and with a longer tail.  On the back of their neck they have a narrow black half-ring, edged with white, from which they get their name.


This preening bird shows off its black collar…


Eurasian Collared-Doves are becoming more common in the rural areas south and east of Calgary, and are being seen regularly in the city as well.  They seem to occupy an ecological niche between that of the Rock Pigeon and Mourning Dove.  It remains to be seen if they will become a common backyard bird like the Rock Pigeon, or primarily a rural one like the Mourning Dove.  If you see any in your yard, please let Birds Calgary know!

Posted by Bob Lefebvre