Doves are seen in nearly every corner of the world, and there are hundreds of Dove species in existence. However, only a few doves are usually available as pets, with the Mourning Dove as the most popular pet dove species.
These species are 12 inches long, and their color has a soft blended shade of brown and gray, with dark spots on the wings. One may recognize doves in flight upon viewing their large pointing tail.
They prefer habitats including open farmlands and forests but are easily adaptable to parks and suburban areas. Doves are particularly fond of available gravel or dirt areas for roosting and sunning.
Northern Dove populations may migrate as far as Central America or Yucatan Peninsula during winter. If food is sufficient, however, they may not migrate. Especially in urban and suburban areas, these birds are often year-round inhabitants, even in northern regions.
Doves are primarily granivorous and eat mainly grain and seeds. They will, however, eat insects and mollusks during the breeding period when growing chicks need more significant amounts of protein for proper development.
About Dove Bird Houses
Mourning Doves have a kind nature and soft cooing song to match. Since these small songbirds are happy around people, they are easy to invite to anyone’s backyard.
Attracting doves by offering them one of many types of engaging bird houses is simple to do. They do not prefer to be enclosed while nesting–in fact, they do not choose to fuss too much about their nest house at all.
When installing the Dove house, put some straw in the bird house as nesting material. Doves aren’t good at making nests. They’re more likely to nest in your bird house if everything is already fixed up and good to go.
It’s good to set your bird house on the inside corner of an eave. Whether it’s an eave on a house, garage, carport, shed, apartment, or trellis shouldn’t matter. These birds prefer a narrow-angle of look wherever they nest. It encourages them to feel more protected.
Doves can be lively backyard inhabitants, and many birders enjoy the company of both fledglings and adults exploring their surroundings. By providing the most reliable wooden bird houses, any birder can attract doves and their families to become regular guests.
Size Of Dove Bird Houses
The dimensions of a bird house are among the most critical factors in creating it suitable for dove species. If the house is too small, adult birds may face difficulty while entering or exiting. A house that is too big gives predators easy access, and undesirable birds may use it instead.
In place of a complete bird house, a platform is perfect for bringing Mourning Doves.
The minimum space of the base should be 8 x 8 inches, though slightly larger space is also suitable and may be adequate for large broods.
The interior height of the bird house should be 8 inches to offer enough space and ventilation for all Doves.
The face of the house should be open, while the sides must be slightly open. The bird house should be installed on the side of a house, garage, or shed at a height between 7 to 14 feet, directly above or facing garden areas and open spaces.
When you place the bird house, the top corner of the Dove house is no more than 1 inch off from the eave, from the top. And it is good to leave a minimum of 2 inches of space between the side of the bird house and the inner corner of your wall.
If there is a shrub, tree, or some big plant close to the Dove house will help to draw these birds to nest there.
Dove Bird Houses Maintenance
To effectively and safely clean and maintain a ‘used’ Dove bird house, here are some tips:
● Clean the bird house only after the Doves complete nesting. They usually nest more than once in a season, so expect doves to come back soon.
● Provide a minimum of two perches of different thickness and materials; these alterations help keep birds’ feet healthy and strong. You can also place perches at different heights.
● Birds are sensitive to gases, smoke, and strong smells. Keep the house far from the kitchen and open windows. Please don’t set the home in direct sun, and be sure to cover it at nighttime.
● We recommend you to use a paper liner for doves, and you need to replace it daily to every other day, depending on the amount of mess your bird creates every day. If you’re using bird-safe bedding, remove droppings often, and replace them at least once a week.
● You should offer Doves a 15-25% pelleted-based diet and 50-60% birdseed. Feed your birds dark, leafy greens and vegetables (every other day) and fruit such as berries, melon, and kiwi (once a week).
● Provide a warm bowl of water for your Doves to bathe 2 to 3 times a week. Or, if they favor, lightly mist them with clean, warm water from a spray bottle.
● Use caution when managing pets, and remember they may scratch or bite (especially when stressed).
● Wash your hands thoroughly with soapy, warm water before and after contact with any bird or its habitat.
Building or Buying Dove Bird Houses
Here are some of the best Dove bird house plans you can buy or build.
Mourning Dove Platform Shelter: This Mourning Dove platform by 70birds has an 8″ by 8″ base, almost an 8″ ceiling, an open face, and partially open sides. It is Made up of pine, cedar, or almost any softwood. Always practice corrosion-resistant screws and other tools.
Duncraft Best Nesting Shelf: This perfect-looking nesting shelf by Duncraft is made up of 100% natural and durable wood. These bird house kits are one of the best gifts you can give to your kids. The house will ideally support Doves to raise their young and keep predators out.
Lovey-Dovey Original Dovehouse: The Lovey-Dovey Dove house plan is made with cedar and stained with 100% bio-based eco-friendly wood stain. You can easily detach the baseboard of this bird house for easy cleaning. It is also a proven bird house kit that attracts doves (Doves will nest in these bird houses!).
Dove Nests in Bird Houses
A pair of Doves begin to form their nest after the courtship phase when the male approaches the female with a puffed-out breast, loud calls, and bobbing head.
Once the female accepts the proposal, the male takes her to potential nesting sites, and the female will choose one. Potential nesting sites would be hardwood trees, shrubs, vines, artificial houses, or hanging flower pots.
The formation of the nest may take up to 2-4 days. Only the female forms the nest and begins with material like twigs, grass, conifer needles, and weeds.
Doves may suddenly leave the nest if they feel any threat or danger from predators whether animals, birds, or maybe humans. Birders need to exercise caution.
The nest can be discovered 5-25 feet off the ground, frequently in the crotch of a tree or shrub.
One accurately constructed and properly placed dove nesting site may be home to 12 newborn doves each year. Although a female lays only two eggs per brood, she may develop as many as six broods each year in warm climates.
You can set goals to bird-watch for these Doves after you have placed your bird house in your backyard and record your results.