Monday, April 15, 2013

Bella Has A New Pasttime!!

While working out in the backyard, I noticed that Bella was spellbound by something.  She would not budge from that spot.
Trying to find what had her attention, I went farther into the back and found out what was getting her attention.
We have a Mourning Dove that has built a nest in our 50' pine tree!
See the little black, beady eye?
Is it Morning Dove or Mourning Dove?
I went to Goggle (another thing Brenda has taught me) and found some interesting things. 
They are also called Turtle Dove, American Mourning Dove or Rain Dove.
The male leads the female to potential nesting sites and the female chooses. The female also builds the nest (we aren't surprised at that one) and the nest is constructed of twigs, conifer needles and grass and is very flimsy.
The "clutch" size is almost always two eggs.  The eggs are white.  Both sexes incubate, the male from morning to afternoon, and the female the rest of the day and at night.  They are very devoted parents; nests are rarely left unattended.
Incubation takes two weeks.  The hatched young, called squabs, are altricial (meaning requiring nourishment), being helpless at hatching and are covered with down.
The pair of doves may raise up to six broods in a season.
The Mourning Dove is monogamous and forms strong pair bonds.  Pairs typically reconvene in the same area the following season and sometimes remain together throughout the winter.
They are called "Mourning" due to color and the sound they make which some think sounds sad.  Also, doves sometimes literally mourn themselves to death over the loss of a mate.
So, that's your lesson on Mourning Doves for today.  We will follow the incubation and I'm sure Bella will keep track of them.
Is there anything any prettier than phlox flowing over the side of a flower bed?  I don't think so.
If you remember the story behind my Weeping Cherry Tree given to me by my friend Carole - she also started this bed of phlox which she gifted to me on another birthday.  Can you tell she is an outdoor person?
The dainty little purple flowers by the door are growing like crazy.
This was the pot of Hostas last week - look at them today!
So, enjoy this beautiful Spring day because it's suppose to be cold again later in the week! 
Till next time, Judy




  1. Mourning doves have been a favorite garden bird of mine since childhood in Wisconsin, and still now, here in California. We fed them in spring and summer til they flew south for the winter. I love their cooing. I was sad to learn that people shoot them, and here we were fattening them up. I admire hunting for food, but still, not MY birds.

  2. Great post, Judy. I always wanted to know more about mourning doves since we have them nesting everywhere around our house, including on window ledges! I do wonder how long they nurture those little babies, it seems they sit with them forever, I had a nest on my balcony and I couldn't go out on it for weeks for fear I'd scare them!

    A friend of ours could imitate their "coo, coo, coo" perfectly and they would actually start to flock around him! Very sweet birds!


  3. I have tons of doves now. I started feeding the birds and now I feel obligated to feed them. They sit on the feeder and give their mournful cry until I go feed. I don't know what will happen if I'm not able to feed them. I notice them in pairs too. Charlie and Lola just ignore them but they aren't bird dogs. They prefer to chase the squirrels. Love all your pretty flowers. I have none this year. Don't know why. Hope it's just too early. Love your photos. You are getting really good!

    Cheery wave from

  4. OMG Judy - Bella looks so much like my Lili - they could be sisters.
    Lovely post - I have two pair of doves and they hand out here with me.

    Of course I have to feed all the birds. Feel like Bird Land lol.
    Your flowers are so pretty.
    Took a little break from working in the garden so it's back to work.
    Have a wonderful week and Lili said hello to Nella.

  5. Oh how sweet! We have tons of doves here. I just love to hear them cooing.

  6. The phlox reminds me of my grandmother's flowers.

    We have had a dove to build a next near our shed in past years, but not this year yet.

  7. A friend of mine told me she saw three doves outside her window today! It must be dove time! Great photos Judy. Bella is very cute. Love the flowers, they are all doing great. xo

  8. The phlox is so pretty! I don't have any but I have neighbors that have it flowing over their retaining wall and it's just gorgeous!

    Bella is cute!

  9. Judy, I enjoyed the mourning dove info. Your garden is looking so pretty! I am happy that all the flowers are blooming here also.

  10. Is your sweet Bella a bird dog? It looks like she is acting like one. Her speckles remind me of my grandpa's bird dogs that he used for hunting quail.
    I enjoyed finding out about mourning doves. They are so sweet. They usually build a nest in our spruce tree. The nests are pretty pitiful. Our doves lay a few tiny twigs crossways of some branches, just tight enough so the eggs don't fall through. You can see daylight through the nests.
    I love to hear them hoo hoo hooing back and forth to each other in the early, early morning.

  11. Hi Judy - I love mourning doves. Everyone thinks I'm crazy -- they don't like them but I love the sound they make. We always have a pair in the backyard with their little ones all summer. J

  12. Judy, your blooms are so pretty! And your sweet Bella is cute! I wish we has doves and in our trees too...

  13. Mourning doves are a favorite of mine too. We have so many that I think Katie Belle has given up paying attention to them. Her eye is always on the chipmunks, her personal enemy. All I can do is try to keep her in when they're out feeding. Love the picture of beautiful Bella!

    Did you know that some people used to make house pets of mourning doves? They're supposed to be very affectionate when raised in the house from very young. There may be laws against that now.

  14. Hi again Judy, WOW was my sentiment too, when I saw how much your Hostas had grown! Mine are growing now too. Don't you love spring? And how sweet that your dog has been watching the Mourning Doves. For the longest time, I always thought I was hearing an owl in the morning, until someone corrected me and told me it was a Mourning Dove. I didn't know much more about them except that they sounded like owls, until your post. Thanks for the info! How sad that they sometimes mourn themselves to death over the loss of a mate. Unbelievable that there could be so much feeling inside such a small body. Wow.




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