Blue doves: how they live and what they eat


Gray-eyed pigeons are often found on the streets of cities and towns. They are also called sizaryah. They were the first birds tamed by humans. Sizar has become the progenitor of a domestic breed. Travelers and traders who roamed around the world took the sisaris with them. Now they are common in Asia, and in Europe, and in America, and on other continents. How do pigeons live gray rock? What do they eat? How to multiply?

Sizar groups

Among the specimens of the gray rock, there are some groups of birds. They are synanthropic and wild. Those pigeons are called synanthropic, which are very attached to man and are largely dependent on him. Birds live under the roofs of residential buildings, outbuildings, in the crevices of monuments. They build nests there, grow chicks.

To get food, they leave their homes and go down. The man feeds them. Children in the park must throw them crumbs or wheat grains. In winter, bird feeders are built. In the countryside, in the courtyard, they eat from the same feeder together with the agricultural bird: chickens, ducks, geese. The blue dove of the synanthropic group is seated. He has no need to leave the place where he is fed. He will survive the frost under a warm roof.

Synanthropic Syzya pigeons

Another group of gray-colored pigeons is wild. The bird prefers to live in the crevices of large embankments near rivers or in depressions, caves of rocks. The maximum height at which the gray pigeon can climb is 2.5 thousand meters. Birds feed on seeds of plants, green grass, young shoots of bushes. Often they can be found on the outskirts of fields in the meadows. They collect seeds from the ground, but do not peck them out of the ears, like other birds do. Sisaris do not harm farmers.

Wild birds chose Asia, Europe, and North Africa for their habitat. They can be migratory if in a region where pigeons build nests, cold winters and it is difficult to get food. So from Siberia they fly to the European part of the continent, to India. Birds are very hardy, they can stay in flight up to 6:00 pm Domesticated individuals cannot make long flights. They have lost this ability, due to the settled way of life.

Breed characteristic

Domesticated pigeons are slightly larger than wild ones. They live longer, up to 15 years. The life span of a bird in the wild is just over 3 years. Their plumage color is not as saturated as that of the synanthropic group. The gray pigeon has the following characteristic features:

  • the constitution is massive, the landing is horizontal, the length of the body is about 36 cm, the average weight of individuals is 380 g,
  • the head has a rounded shape, the forehead slightly protrudes forward, the eyes are medium in size, the eyebrows are distinctly pronounced, the cornea is of a dark color, the eyelids are thin and light,
  • the beak is long, strong, pink in color,
  • the neck is of medium size, the pigeon holds it vertically, the head is always raised, the females slightly lower their head,
  • the back and abdomen are wide, the chest is massive,
  • the limbs are medium in size, the tarsus is not feathered, pink in color,
  • the wings are large, fit tightly to the body, but do not hang down to the ground, the wingspan is 67 cm, wild muscles are well developed in wild individuals,

Griffon subspecies of synanthropic gray doves

  • the plumage is friable, the main color is gray, the distinctive feature is the black stripes on the wings, the color of the rest of the plumage can be different, only about 28 types of shades are recited,
  • classic color of the gray dove: a light, ashy shade of the head smoothly turns into a darker gray color of the neck,
  • on the neck and chest is marked dark green and rich pink gloss,
  • light shade of the back, chest and abdomen turns into a darker one on the tail,
  • wings of ashen color with black stripes,
  • the tail is almost black.

Sisareas with classic plumage is difficult to meet. The change in suit was influenced by the pairing of wild, synanthropic birds and domestic pigeons, which did not find the way home. As a result of mutations in nature, individuals appeared with white, black and red hues of plumage. The gray color is still dominant, but a marble pattern with a different shade may appear on the body.

Doves have very sharp eyesight. They distinguish ultraviolet colors that are inaccessible to the human eye. A bird's ear can pick up ultrasounds. These features help individuals to navigate well in space. Pigeons do not shout, do not sing. They coo. With the help of cooing, they express a relationship to each other, communicate with each other.


The mating season at the gray-blue dove begins in March. The male is looking for a mate. He chooses a female and starts caring for her. The male is dancing in front of her, spinning, spreading his wings, inflating goiter. The color of the plumage from him becomes brighter, casts all shades of blue, green, red. Females have more modest plumage.

Families are created for life. After mating, the female begins to build a nest. It is not tidy: several branches and feathers that parents pull out of their breasts. Masonry consists of 2 eggs. Hatching her female. The male brings her food. The incubation period lasts 19 days. For the season, the female can make up to 5 clutches.

Nestlings appear with a rare body plumage, with a large beak, large head. After 15 days, the children's beak disappears, an adult appears in its place. It is more robust, elegant. Up to 30 days chicks are in the nest. Parents feed them goiter milk. It is a nutrient fluid that is produced by the goiter cells. It contains all the nutrients that are necessary for the young.

After 2 weeks, parents bring grain and grass to the chicks. By the age of one month, the chicks already know how to fly and leave the nest themselves. At first the youngsters are kept around their parents. Then, individuals gather in flocks. A flock can be uneven. Adult birds tolerate such a neighborhood.

Gray pigeons man actively uses. They are trained on the flight range, in search of objects. They are involved in rescue operations. With their help carry out aerial photography. Sisari quickly learn. The breeders select the healthiest, most enduring and intelligent birds for breeding new offspring, which will further serve humanity and benefit.


The pigeon has a rather large size. The length of the body can be up to 40 cm, the weight is almost 400 g. The color of the plumage is very different, up to 28 shades of bird color are distinguished.

The main background of ash-gray color can cast and violet, and purple, and green, and yellow shades. The wings are large, wide. The whole body is densely covered with feathers and down of various sizes. But the feathers are kept weakly, so in the habitats of pigeons you can always see a large number of lost feathers.

In the city, pigeons become almost tame. They safely feed on children's hands.

Females differ from males only in a smaller shade of gray-metallic color. Juveniles are usually nondescript and do not have such a rich set of coloring.

Everyone knows the characteristic sounds made by pigeons. People come to the feeding places of pigeons on purpose to listen to their gentle cooing. When grooming, the male makes more uterine sounds, and the chicks in the nest can only faintly hiss or click with their beak.

Nicobar pigeon (Caloenas nicobarica)

Where do pigeons live?

Wild pigeons settle in areas with rocky terrain, not far from rivers. Flocks of urban pigeons live under the roofs of tall buildings that remind them of native coastal cliffs.

Not far from the shelter of a person pigeons are always full - you can find food waste. Also, people have already become a tradition to feed daily flocks of urban pigeons.

Yellow-legged Green Dove (Treron phoenicopterus)

Behavior features

Pigeons living on the rocks do not know how to sit on the branches of trees, but their urban relatives learned to do this. In populated areas, birds with different speeds walk along the ground, continuously moving their graceful head. A scared flock quickly soars up and sits on high, inaccessible to human places. Pigeons fly swiftly, beautifully, making large circles in the air. In nature, can reach speeds of up to 185 km / h.

They breed frequently, during a year 7–8 times, they lay 2 eggs. Doves keep their pairs for life. It is interesting to observe the process of courtship in the mating season - the male performs his dance, fluff the tail, cooing, walking around the samochka in circles. After mating, they adjoin their beaks, as if kissing, and brush each other's feathers.

Both parents incubate eggs, replacing each other. And both feed the hatching chicks with goitre “milk” - a nutrient mixture formed in the goiter. Later begin to feed the seeds of various plants.

Mail pigeon with a device for photographing.

Adult birds feed mainly on plant food, very rarely on insects. Pigeons are easy to train. If you feed them at the same time, the pack will fly up to this very time.

They are hungry in the early morning and in the afternoon, closer to the twilight, the whole pack goes to bed.

The pigeons have a lot of enemies in nature. They are hunted by foxes, raccoons, cats, and a dog can grab them. Various predatory birds - owls, owls, golden eagles, peregrine falcons attack in the air.

During the war pigeons helped to defeat fascism.

In cities, many pigeons die from infectious diseases and frost on very cold days. In some cities, they are exterminated especially because they too pollute the habitat with their droppings.

Man has long used pigeons as postmen. Excellent hearing, vision and memory help pigeons to return to their homes, flying up to 1000 km per day.

Do you know what animal, even though it is as big as an average dog, is afraid of a brown bear, a wolf, and a wild boar? Do you want to know? Then you here!

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Dove - description and photos. Coloring pigeons.

The length of the wing of a pigeon is 20-27 cm, weight ranges from 200 to 650 g.

The color of pigeons can be completely different. Some species and breeds of pigeons are multi-colored, like parrots, or with tails like those of peacocks. No wonder pink colors of pigeons, yellow, peach or coffee. Pigeons can be one color, multi-colored or have a pattern in their plumage. There are species with curly plumage or a large number of feathers near the head or paws.

Types of pigeons.

The genus of pigeons includes 35 species, 2 of which are extinct:

  • Columba albinucha— white-necked dove
  • Columba albitorques - Ethiopian pigeon
  • Columba argentina - silver dove
  • Columba arquatrix - olive pigeon
  • Columba bollii - Canarian pigeon
  • Columba delegorguei— wine red dove
  • Columba elphinstonii — Nilgiri dove
  • Columba eversmanni - brown dove
  • Columba guinea— speckled pigeon
  • Columba hodgsonii - Himalayan dove
  • Columba iriditorques - speckled (Guinean) dove
  • Columba janthina — black pigeon
  • Columba jouyi - silver-striped dove (extinct species)
  • Columba junoniae - bay dove
  • Columba larvata (Aplopelia larvata) - lemon pomegranate
  • Columba leucomela - black and white dove
  • Columba leuconota — White-breasted Pigeon
  • Columba livia - rock dove
  • Columba malherbii - Santo Tomean pigeon
  • Columba oenas — Clintuch
  • Columba oliviae - somali dove
  • Columba pallidiceps— yellow-legged pigeon
  • Columba palumboides - Andaman pigeon
  • Columba palumbus— wood pigeon, or Vitus
  • Columba pollenii - Comorian pigeon
  • Columba pulchricollis - ashen dove
  • Columba Punicea — Purple Pigeon
  • Columba rupestris— rock pigeon
  • Columba sjostedti
  • Columba thomensis - maroon pigeon
  • Columba torringtonii - ceylon pigeon
  • Columba trocaz— Madeira dove
  • Columba unicincta — Congolese pigeon
  • Columba versicolor - Bonin Dove (extinct species)
  • Columba vitiensis — White-faced Pigeon

In total, about 800 breeds of domestic pigeons were bred, 200 of which were bred in Russia.

What do pigeons eat?

Pigeons feed on seeds, fruits of fruit trees, berries. Urban birds can consume food waste (wheat, corn, oats, barley). Sometimes pigeons eat insects. In general, birds prefer to settle near the dwelling of a person, so it is easier for them to find food. Pigeons are quite unpretentious in choosing a source of food, since a pigeon has very few taste receptors in the mouth: 37 taste buds compared to 10,000 taste receptors that a person has.

When a pigeon drinks, it draws water in as if through a straw, while other birds mostly catch a few drops with their beak, and then throw their heads back so that the water gets into the throat.

Where do pigeons live?

Pigeons live everywhere, with the exception of Antarctica and the polar region. Despite the number of traveling pigeons reaching 5 billion, they died out due to deforestation in North America.

The dodo or dodo dove is a bird that has become extinct due to the efforts of man. The dodo lived in Mauritius, Mascarene Islands and Rodrigues. He had no natural enemies, did not fly, swam poorly and ran. In height, he reached the meter, built nests on the ground and laid one egg. With the advent of the Europeans, the pigeon drone was destroyed by them. Because of the gullibility of the dodo pigeon, hunting for him was not difficult, and brought dogs, cats and pigs devoured the eggs of pigeons.

Dove is a bird of the world.

The bird of the world is another name for pigeons. The expression became popular after the end of the Second World War. Pablo Picasso painted a white dove of peace with an olive sprig in its beak. The story about this bird is told in the Bible. It was the pigeon who brought Noah a sprig of olives to show that the water had descended after the flood, and that one could get out. White dove with a sprig in its beak - the emblem of the World Congress of the peace.

Dove: description

Gray pigeons are very common in the United States, Europe, Asia and North Africa. In the Russian Federation, sizaris live along the entire European part and beyond the Urals to the Yenisei. Gray pigeons perfectly adapted to our, in some places, harsh climatic conditions. They endure severe frosts and sultry heat. The blue pigeon is directly related to the genus and the family of pigeons, is its founder and, perhaps, the most prominent representative. The closest relatives of this feathered include: rocky, speckled, white-breasted and Ethiopian pigeons.

Omnivorous resilience to the vast majority of diseases and fertility of the bird contributes to its abundant settlement.

Wild pigeons are classified as sedentary territorial birds, which are assigned to certain territories. Wild sisaris sometimes wander, but over short distances, in search of food, and the urban counterparts rarely travel a few kilometers during the day. Pigeons that live in mountainous areas, the summer period is carried out at an altitude of up to 4 km, and with the onset of winter they descend to the foot. This is the only stage of the season. migration blue pigeon. Despite their low activity, the sisaris are excellent flyers that can reach speeds of up to 150 km / h. Having an incredibly moving tail and strong wings, they are able to climb on the wing and maneuver due to the flow of wind.

Sisari prefer to live in colonies, numbering up to a thousand individuals. The population of birds around the world is millions of individuals and changes regularly. With the onset of cold weather - the population is declining, and increasing in summer.

Interesting distinctive feature Birds are shaking their heads while walking. This is due to the structure of the feathered visual apparatus. Making a step, the feathered head swiftly moves forward and freezes for a split second. It is at this moment that the gray is best known to the world around it.

Another characteristic feature of this species of birds is cooing. In the mating season, the males emit a guttural rumble, which serves as a call for females and a signal to other males that this place is already taken. During the incubation of eggs, the female makes sounds that are similar to the purr of a cat.

Ornithologists distinguish the following types cooing:

  • Cooing feeding
  • Summoning
  • Hazard evidence
  • Nest,
  • Cooing testimony of courtship.

Color and plumage of sisaris

One of the most common colors of pigeons is gray-blue. Head, neck, breast plumage has a greenish-purple color, purple or yellow gloss with a metallic sheen. The goiter is pinkish in color. There are subspecies with dark and white loin. Many subspecies have a tiny white speck on their backs. Along the edge of the wings are two black stripes and one black along the edge of the tail.

The synanthropic or urban bird has a large variety of size and color. This is due to fairly frequent by crossing this representative is feathered with purebred poultry, as a result of which we contemplate pigeons with pinned and ocher plumage. Wild representatives of sisaris have a darker color, and sometimes you can find completely black ones.

Eyes of sisarees come in all sorts of colors: golden yellow, red, golden orange or just orange. As for the legs, they can vary from pink to black colors.

The adult female is similar in color to the male. Main difference - the absence of metallic reflux and pronounced basement.

Sisaris lifestyle

Gray pigeons are active throughout the daylight hours. As for urban birds, they can move in the dark as well, since, as a rule, city streets are well lit. Большую часть своего времени пернатые уделяют на поиски пищи и отдыху, выделяя всего 3% от общего времени, на перелеты. Во время активной phases размножения и выкармливания птенцов время поиска еды занимает большую половину времени всей продолжительности светового дня.

Birds sleep throughout the duration of the night, with a cluck at the same time, and hiding their beaks in feathers. The female in most cases lives in a nest, and the male lives not far from her. Birds collectively go to watering in the morning or evening.

City pigeons are inactive, and warm lofts of houses allowed the birds to breed throughout the year. If the colony is settled in favorable conditions, they are able to display up to 9 broods per year. As for wild pigeons, in breeding offspring they are limited to exceptionally warm months of the year and make no more than 4 clutches.

What do the pigeon eat?

It is worth noting that gray pigeons are omnivorous, but the main part of their diet is food of plant origin - fruits of trees, grains and berries, seeds of various plants. Birds with big pleasure absorb all kinds of insects, mollusks and worms. In cold seasons, they do not disdain anything, they can even eat carrion. To improve your own digestion, blues absorb miniature shells, pebbles and grains of sand.

Gray-feathered birds feed in flocks and, at times, several dozen, if not hundreds, of birds often gather at the feeding place. In particular, large flocks can be observed during the cereal harvest. Birds skillfully peck up fallen grains, and with them weed seeds. Pretty heavy body weight and physiological feature paws deprives them of the ability to peck up grain from the ears, so these species of birds do not pose a threat to agricultural fields.

In one meal, gray is able to absorb up to 40 grams of seeds, provided that the daily rate of food of plant origin is 60 grams.

Ornithologists have found that urban birds began to switch to a different type of food, which is not peculiar to them. They got used to extracting seedlings of oats in the fields, which is more typical of rooks, pecking apples, looking for food leftovers in dog feces.

Interesting facts about sizaryah:

  • One pigeon pair is able to hatch from 14 to 16 chicks for one year. On average, each nestling of this breed weighs about 700 grams. Thus, it is worth noting that one pair is able to provide its owner from 8 to 10 kilograms of excellent quality meat.
  • Pigeons can breed for decorative, sports purposes, as well as for the first-class meat. There are hybrid breeds, for example: Strasser, Modensky, King and others, which are used in food in a large number of countries. The meat of the young representatives of pigeons is incredibly valued.
  • The blue dove is an incredibly hardy and strong bird. Due to these qualities, they were very much appreciated during the time of using pigeon mail. Pigeons can reach speeds of up to 140 km / h and are able to fly up to 3 thousand km. Thanks to these physiological features of the birds, pigeon sport was created, or rather, the competition of the post pigeons. Olympiads and contests for trained and trained birds are held once every two years.
  • Pigeons are birds of the world. The second name became popular and entered into vocabulary at the end of the Second World War. The great artist Pablo Picasso depicted a white dove, symbolizing the world, with an olive branch in its beak. The story of this amazing bird is told in the Bible. White dove with a branch in its beak - the emblem of the World Peace Congress.