Mourning Doves might be confused with many other doves found across the country (see below), but there are several ways to differentiate between them.
Inca Doves and Common Ground-Doves are much smaller than Mourning Doves and have chestnut markings on their wings. White-winged Doves are about the same size but have distinctive white patches on their wings seen in both flying and resting birds.
Eurasian Collared-Doves are very similar to Mourning Doves, but their tail is square and they usually show a visible collar. Mourning Doves have a long pointy tail and a spot, not a collar on their neck. The Eurasian Collared-Dove is an introduced and invasive species. It has spread rapidly across much of North America. It made a similar expansion across Europe in the 1900s. It is thought that the species occurred historically only in and around India, and that a massive expansion in the 1600s brought it into Turkey and the Balkans.
The Eurasian Collared-Dove is often kept as a pet. Owners sometime release the bird into the wild, which may result in further expansion.
Check out the links for each species of pigeon and dove to see their ranges throughout the continent and determine which might be found near you, or read on below!
Some species that can be seen in North America are:
Found throughout most of North America.
Eurasian Collared Dove
Introduced into the Bahamas in the mid-1970s, it is now found throughout the southeastern United States and has been seen across the continent.
A common resident of urban areas of the Southwest.
African Collared-Dove (Ringed Turtle-Dove)
A domesticated dove. It frequently escapes from captivity, and feral populations have become established in some cities in the southern United States.
Found in the Southwest United States and tropics. An introduced population has become established in Florida.
The smallest dove in the United States, the Common Ground-Dove is a bird of the southern United States and tropical America. Aptly named, it feeds and nests on the ground.
Found in islands and coastlines in the Caribbean and can be seen in southern Florida.
This large pigeon looks a lot like the introduced Rock Pigeon but it’s a native. The Band-tailed Pigeon is found in the American West as well as throughout Central and South America.